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Migration Issues Dominate Merkel’s African Tour - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Nouakchott-During her first visit to Africa, German Chancellor Angela Merkel has sought to stop future migration waives, hoping to improve her image in Germany, which was badly affected following the influx of around 500,000 refugees from Syria and Iraq since 2015.

The German leader has encouraged the European Union and North African countries to ink deals similar to the Turkish-EU agreement to curb migrant flows to Europe.

In previous statements, Merkel said that the African continent – in which 1.2 billion people live – lacks opportunities, urging the international community to increase donations to solve the problems that push African youth to migrate in hopes for having better living conditions.

Merkel has emphasized that Africa will be a priority when her country takes over the G20’s revolving presidency at the end of 2016.

In Niger, Merkel met with President Mahamadou Issoufou and pledged to provide additional financial aid for both development and the military to contribute to the country’s war against human traffickers and terrorists. She announced that both states have signed a deal, allowing Germany to build a military base in Niger.

During a press conference in Niamey, Merkel announced financial assistance worth EUR77 million to Niger for the purpose of backing the government’s efforts in combatting human trafficking and illegitimate migration.

Issoufou greeted the aid his country received from Germany and considered that the establishment of the German military base helps combatting terrorism in Niger and Mali.

Groups from Al-Qaeda and ISIS have launched many attacks against the African coast mostly in Mali and Niger, which have French military forces and U.N. forces comprising 650 German soldiers.