Migration and mobility

Presiding over a meeting of the National Security Council “devoted to the urgent measures that must be taken to deal with the arrival in Tunisia of a large number of irregular migrants from sub-Saharan Africa”, the Tunisian head of state Kais Saied made an extremely harsh speech about “hordes of illegal migrants” from sub-Saharan Africa.

Insisting on the “need to put a rapid end” to this flow, Kais Saied said that it was part of a “criminal enterprise hatched at the dawn of this century to change the demographic composition of Tunisia”, in order to transform it into an “African-only” country and blur its “Arab-Muslim” character.

“This speech causes great disappointment and dismay,”Romdhane Ben Amor, spokesman for the Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights (FTDES), told AFP. “This racist and hateful speech marks a sad day. The fact that the president of a country that is a signatory to international conventions on immigration makes such a speech is extremely serious,” he said.