Southern Neighbourhood
Migration and mobility

The French Minister of the Interior, Gérald Darmanin, made his first visit to Morocco on Friday, October 16, 2020. During a meeting with his Moroccan counterpart, Abdelouafi Laftit, Mr. Darmanin discussed the issue of isolated minors, their identification and their follow-up.

When migrants “are of age, we agreed that it was normal to continue, despite the Covid-19 crisis, to return to Moroccan territory, and when they are minors, to continue to (the) protect and be able to bring them back when we can, with their families in Morocco or in Moroccan educational centers,w he said.

Long before this visit, the French minister said in an interview with Radio France Inter that the issue of unaccompanied minors will be the focus of his visit to Morocco.

Mr Darmanin said that this issue needs to be resolved across the European Union and that it is a matter of security, diplomacy and child protection. The minister added that in Paris, Bordeaux, and several other major cities in France, there are unaccompanied minors from Algeria and Morocco.

It is worthy to note that so far no European country has succeeded in setting up mechanisms for the return of minors, since they are protected by several texts, starting with the International Convention on the Rights of Children.