Libyan authorities in collaboration with the International Organization for Migration on Wednesday returned 91 voluntary illegal migrants to their country of origin, Niger, while another 162 Nigerian migrants returned voluntarily to their country, via Mitiga airport in the capital, Tripoli.
This was stated by the head of the deportation department of illegal migrants at Misrata International Airport, Hussein Al-Amin Al-Turki, to Anadolu Agency (AA) on the sidelines of the deportation process.
Al-Turki said: “We have today flown from Misrata International Airport to Niamey International Airport, following the voluntary return of irregular migrants.
He added: “The migrants numbered 91, including 6 men, 25 women and 60 children and infants, through the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).
Libya is the main departure point for illegal migrants fleeing war and poverty in Africa and the Middle East and wishing to settle in Europe.
Ibrahim Farinluya, an official of the Nigerian National Emergency Management Agency, said in a press statement that the voluntary return of the migrants was the result of cooperation between the Abuja government and the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).
He added that among the illegal migrants who returned to Nigeria were 98 women, 24 children and 12 infants, stressing that some of them were suffering from health problems.
According to a report by the Nigerian National Emergency Management Agency, about 22,000 Nigerian irregular migrants have voluntarily returned to their country from 17 countries since 2017.