Niger

by Laura Lambert, published 09.12.2019

Basic data and short characterization

Migration was a resource in Niger for a long time and was hardly subject to political regulation by the Nigerien government. Also, Europe’s interest in Niger was extremely low. Both situations changed around 2015, when Niger became a key partner state in the implementation of European migration control policies. Since then, numerous European stakeholders are involved in Niger’s migration policy making. Money and security equipment are being moved to the Sahel state. In return, the mobility of people in Niger, especially those from West and Central Africa, has been massively restricted. As a new “border guard of Europe”,[1] Niger has not only become the terminus and return corridor for fleeing and migrating people, but also a laboratory for the deployment of mobile border patrols in impassable terrain and the externalisation of refugee protection. Niger, affected by several crises, is increasingly generating refugee movements itself.

Economy and government

Since its independence from France in 1960, Niger has gone through long periods of autocratic and military rule. It has formally become a presidential democracy in 1990. Since 2011, the country has been under the government of President Mahamadou Issoufou and his party, PNDS-Tarayya. However, due to the limited freedom of the press, freedom of opinion and assembly and checks and balances, democracy indexes are increasingly classifying the regime as a so-called hybrid regime.[2]

President Issoufou has secured funds and military support for the state in the fight against irregular migration and terrorism. However, he is in conflict with the opposition[3] and criticised for not having done enough to combat poverty, terrorism and corruption.[4] The corruption of the security forces is affecting the freedom of movement in the country. According to the anti-corruption agency HALCIA, bribes are structurally necessary for the functioning of the security forces.[5] Since Issoufou’s announcement that he would not stand for re-election at the end of his second mandate in 2021, which is in accordance with the constitution, the political struggle for his succession has begun. Issoufou’s candidate, the current Interior Minister Mohamed Bazoum, is considered a reliable partner by European and international partners, but is controversial among the population.[6]

Surrounded by expanding crises in the neighbouring states of Mali, Nigeria, Libya, Burkina Faso and Chad, the population of Niger itself has increasingly become the target of jihadist terrorist attacks, kidnappings and thefts. According to OCHA, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, almost 200 civilians have already been killed and over a hundred abducted in the first five months of 2019. More than 110,000 people were forced to leave their homes due to threats during this period.[7] Since 1990, Niger has always occupied the (second)last place on the Human Development Index[8] – and this despite the fact that the country is rich in uranium, oil and gold. With an annual budget of around 3.1 billion euros,[9] the state has very limited resources to meet the many priorities. Weak social infrastructures, poverty, unemployment and underemployment affect a large part of the population of 20 million. The impact of strong population growth (3.2% per year[10]) on them is controversial. These factors are considered to be a potential cause of migration decisions and a growing migration pressure claimed by the Nigerien government and feared by the EU.[11] So far, Nigeriens have migrated mainly within West Africa and to the Maghreb.

Migration movements

Niger has often been reduced to its role as a transit country for migration towards Europe.[12] However, a wide variety of voluntary and forced migratory movements intersect in Niger, making it a country of origin, transit and destination.[13]

Circular migration as an adaptation strategy

Temporary circular migration has a long tradition as a strategy for adapting to the living conditions in the Sahel.[14] For a century, it has been directed from Niger to the West African coastal metropolises and since the 1950s also from the Sahel towards Algeria and Libya.[15] 80% of cross-Sahara migration is intra-African migration.[16]

Increasingly, circular migration to Algeria is also undertaken by women and children from the Zinder region. The women travel to Algeria to work as domestic workers, beg or do sex work. After a dramatic accident in 2013, in which 92 people – almost exclusively women and children – died in the desert[17], this migration became publicly known in Niger under the slogan “the women from Kantché” and caused a moral outcry in the patriarchal social order. The stigmatized women expressed in interviews that their husbands were not able to feed their families, nor to meet the needs for a better life.[18] The reaction of the Nigerien state was primarily repressive and aimed at a “fixation” of the women and children: the women are stopped by security forces on their way to Agadez or Arlit and have to try to avoid them.[19] In 2014, Niger concluded an informal readmission agreement with Algeria, which provided for the deportation of 3,000 Nigeriens. This repressive approach to the migration of Nigerien women and children thus preceded the repression of transit migration towards the Maghreb. As Nigerien citizens, they are denied the right to move freely on Nigerien territory and to leave the state.

A widespread internal form of circular migration is the “exode rurale”, the circular mobility of rural dwellers during the dry season, especially to Nigerien cities. In 2011, 890,000 internal migrants were counted.[20] In addition, there are the seasonal herd movements (called “transhumance”) of pastoralists, which also go beyond national borders.

Transit migration and its criminalisation

Since the 1990s, Niger has become an important transit area for migration from West and Central Africa to Libya and in some cases further on to Europe – all the more so since the other migration routes from West Africa via the Canary Islands and Mali have been blocked.[21] In 2016, the UN migration organisation, IOM, counted 292,000 migrants on the main routes in the Nigerien Sahara who travelled towards Libya, and a further 34,000 towards Algeria. In addition, a total of around 111,000 migrants travelled in the opposite direction.[22]

At this point, the EU used political pressure, technical support and financial incentives to ensure that a law on the criminalisation of smugglers (loi 2015-036), which had already been adopted in 2015, was also implemented in 2016. It criminalises the aiding and abetting of illegal entry or exit in search of material gains, migrant hosting and the issuing of illegal documents. In the following year, 2017, the IOM counted only about 35,000 migrants at each of the same transit points towards Libya and Algeria.[23] The then-President of the EU Parliament, Tajani, spoke of a 95% reduction of migration movements towards Libya and Europe and celebrated this as a “success of the EU”.[24] In contrast, the UN Rapporteur on the Rights of Migrants emphasised in his Niger report that these measures are contrary to the principle of the freedom of movement within the ECOWAS community of states and to international human rights standards.[25] In addition, he stressed the de facto ban on all mobility north of Agadez,[26] which also hindered the mobility of Nigeriens. Residents of the region emphasize that the migration-based economy of the Agadez region has come to a standstill. “It is as if we have been cut off,” said Maimou Wali in her 2018 publication on the reduced opportunities for young people in Agadez.[27] In the meantime, the law is also being applied in the south of the country and has led to arrests there as well. The criminal prosecution continues. In 2018, according to the Nigerien Border and Migration Police Direction de la Surveillance du Territoire (DST), a total of 142 people were arrested and transferred to justice: 75 of them for migrant smuggling (“traffic illicite des migrants”), 17 for human trafficking and 50 for document fraud. 32 vehicles were confiscated, including 12 cars and 9 motorcycles.[28]

At the same time, it became clear that the migration movements were constantly adapting to the attempts to control, bypassing Agadez and choosing new routes through the desert. No one can say with certainty how many people are travelling in the Sahel and Sahara.

Niger as a country of refuge

For some time now, refugees have been arriving in Niger as a result of conflicts and situations of persecution in West and Central Africa, such as from Liberia, Ivory Coast or the Central African Republic.[29] There have been large movements of refugees into Niger, for the first time in 1990 from Chad, and in 2012/2013 with the beginning of the Mali crisis and persecution by Boko Haram, which occurred in northern Nigeria and the south-eastern part of Niger. By 2019, there were about 56,000 Malian and 120,000 northern Nigerian refugees in the country, as well as a significant number of Nigerian internally displaced persons (IDPs) on the various state borders with Mali, Nigeria and Burkina Faso. Since 2017, the number and background of refugees in Niger have multiplied further: new arrivals are evacuated from Libyan prisons, mainly East African refugees who are undergoing asylum and resettlement procedures in Niger under the Emergency Transit Mechanism (ETM). There are also Sudanese and other asylum seekers in Agadez who have fled Libya on their own. Additionally, in 2019, 35,000 Nigerians fled violence and torture from the Nigerian states of Sokoto and Zamfara. Also, a smaller number of Burkinabe refugees fled to Niger. In October 2019, Niger was home to 218,000 refugees and 187,000 internally displaced persons. 4,600 are asylum seekers.[30] On the other hand, there are very few Nigeriens worldwide who have refugee status themselves (in 2016 only1,235 persons).[31]

Niger as a return corridor

Since the beginning of the Libyan crisis in 2011, many migrants have returned to Niger or West Africa, including through deportations. In 2012 alone 114,500 Nigeriens returned from Libya.[32] Since then, both migration to Libya and return migration from Libya have continued. The IOM is the central actor in the promotion of ‘voluntary’ return and in 2018 brought 2,663 Nigeriens from Libya to Niger.[33]

In the same year, the IOM brought back almost 15,000 migrants from Niger to their predominantly West and Central African countries of origin.[34] Worldwide, Niger was second only to Germany in the number of “Assisted Voluntary Return and Reintegration” (AVVR).[35] The number of returning migrants has increased more than tenfold since 2015. The voluntary nature of this return was questioned by the UN Rapporteur on the Rights of Migrants, as it is the only option offered to migrants for those who have been deported or stopped on migration routes, despite their vulnerability and the human rights violations they have experienced.[36]

While Niger itself deports comparatively few, it has become a holding centre for forced returnees. According to the border police, 15,896 people were deported to Niger in 2018, including 6,705 Nigeriens and 9,191 non-Nigeriens.[37] The IOM statistics are even higher, with 14,919 Nigeriens.[38] Most of these people were deported in mass deportations from Algeria to Niger. Since the beginning of the Algeria-Niger coordinated deportations in 2014, 39,304 Nigeriens have been deported from Algeria – more than twelve times the 3000 people originally foreseen in the repatriation agreement.[39]

While the Nigeriens are mostly brought to Agadez in convoys, the other deportees from West and Central Africa – but partly also from Syria, Yemen, the Palestinian Territories[40], Bangladesh and Sri Lanka – are abandoned at the Algeria-Niger border, in the desert, and then ordered by force of arms to walk towards the Nigerien border post Assamaka 15 km away. These deportations have increased significantly since October 2017.[41] Algeria has been repeatedly criticised at the UN level for the massive human rights violations during these mass deportations. Despite Nigerien diplomatic efforts to stop these deportations, at least of non-ECOWAS nationals, have shown no visible results so far.

Support structures

There are hardly any institutional support structures for migrants and refugees. In the region of Agadez, basic medical care is provided by Médecins sans Frontières[42] and in Niamey by the Red Cross.[43] The only accommodation facilities, which are almost unconditionally accessible, are organised by various West African diaspora organisations such as the Togolese diaspora and religious communities such as the Tidjania in Niamey. The church runs a counselling centre for migrants in Niamey, where counselling and, to a small extent, support is provided.

Many migrants cope with their often extremely difficult migration situation through the helpfulness of the local population or by accepting jobs in exploitative conditions. Asylum seekers are sometimes accommodated in UNHCR shelters in Niamey and Agadez, but only if they have travelled the migration routes towards Europe, are referred by the IOM (via “mixed migration”) or show exceptional vulnerability. Other asylum seekers live on the streets or in self-organised accommodation. For the Sudanese asylum seekers in Agadez and the refugees in the ETM, two camps (“sites”) have been set up outside urban centres, using plastic houses of the IKEA brand “Better Shelter”.

Although the IOM operates six transit centres, it makes accommodation and assistance there dependent on the consent of the persons concerned to assisted voluntary return to the country of origin. Nevertheless, migrants try to stay there for a short time and then leave the open centre again. Since August 2019, the organisation has also been operating a centre for victims of human trafficking together with the Nigerien authority ANLTP-TIM.[44] To a limited extent, the IOM organizes search and rescue missions in the desert together with the Direction Générale de la Protection Civile (DGPC). However, in the first half of 2019, only 15 Search and Rescue missions took place, saving 197 migrants.[45] Although there are no exact figures on how many people actually die on the migration routes through the Sahara, the IOM claims that the Sahara is at least as deadly as the Mediterranean Sea.[46] However, it invests remarkably few resources in rescuing people from the desert. IOM’s objective seems clear: Migrants should be deterred from migration. But the actual saving of human lives, the tracing of the identity of the deceased and informing their relatives is not a priority for the UN organisation. In contrast, the transnational activist project Alarme Phone Sahara, which has operated since 2017, intends to monitor migration routes, low-threshold social services in Agadez and, on a small scale, rescue operations.[47]

Projects of the EU

Since 2016, Niger is one of five African countries with which the EU has established migration partnerships. The associated financial support accounts for a substantial part of Niger’s national budget, which amounts to a mere 3.1 billion euros annually.[48] In 2016, the EU and its member states contributed a quarter of the national budget, with other external donors contributing another 20%.[49] However, the financial flows of the EU for the purpose of migration control are difficult to trace. The main sources of funding are as follows:

Within the framework of development cooperation, support for Niger amounts to over one billion euros for the period 2014-2020, with the fight against irregular migration and human trafficking being one of the three objectives of the support. This is largely implemented through three instruments: Firstly, Niger receives direct budgetary support each year as the EU’s “preferred option” for support, which amounts to around 100 million euros per year since 2016.[50] This budget support is to be made partly directly dependent on progress in the fight against irregular migration.[51] Secondly, the EU External Investment Plan is intended to increase investment in Niger and thus weaken the causes of migration.[52] It combines European funds in Niger amounting to 111 million euros with related loans and subsidies of 726 million euros to date. Thirdly, the Emergency Trust Fund in Niger, set up in 2015 with the Valletta Summit, is supporting 12 national projects in Niger to the tune of 253 million euros.[53] This makes Niger the largest single beneficiary among the 26 African countries involved.[54] In addition, there is also the funding within the framework of regional projects.

In the area of humanitarian aid, the EU has allocated 23.15 million euros for 2019 for refugees, internally displaced persons and host communities.[55] Other regional or thematic funding instruments will also be added.[56] In addition, migration policy measures are financed by other OECD states such as the USA, Canada, Japan and Switzerland.

Even though most of the funds are development cooperation funds, a large part of them are used for security policy measures to combat migration and smuggling, which assumes an interlinkage of (irregular) migration with terrorism, drugs and arms trafficking in Niger.[57] According to EU figures, almost 60% of the national EUTF projects in Niger are in the areas of governance, conflict prevention and migration management.[58] With the priorities set on security policy, EU funds are ultimately redirected from development to migration control.[59] In addition, the EUTF in Niger is criticised for the fact that the planning and implementation of the projects are carried out by European cooperation agencies and NGOs, and in some cases international organisations, but not by national partners. Moreover, these projects are only partially geared to national development priorities and contain hardly any projects on legal migration, although these were envisaged in the Valletta Action Plan.[60] So far, Nigeriens can enter visa-free in only 29 countries of the Global South, ranking 77th out of 90 countries in the Passport Ranking.[61] In addition, the widespread absence of anti-corruption measures is striking in view of the extent of corruption in the migration business.[62] Also noticeable is the lack of independent, unconditional advice, support and legal protection measures for migrants and refugees. Similarly, human trafficking, which is present in Nigerien society, is hardly addressed but treated as a transit phenomenon.[63]

Operations on the ground (training missions, assistance with border markings, etc.)

Security policy initiatives have proliferated in Niger in recent years. They are mostly directed at the police and gendarmerie, although the projects differ in methodology and the degree of direct involvement. Many of these projects are not transparent. In addition, there are some development policy measures on migration alternatives and return.

Training and cooperation missions

The “European Capacity Building Sahel Niger” (EUCAP Sahel Niger) is currently one of ten civilian missions of the EU Common Security and Defence Policy.[64] It involves sending European police forces and security experts to Niger in order to increase the capacities of the Nigerien police, national guard and gendarmerie in the fight against irregular migration through training, advice and the provision of materials. While the mission started in 2012 with the fight against terrorism, its mandate was extended in 2015 to include support in the fight against irregular migration, and in 2016 an office was opened in the (former) migration hub of Agadez.[65] At present, one of the five objectives of the mission is to support the capacity of the security forces to better control migration flows and more effectively combat irregular migration and related criminal activities.[66] From 2012-2018, EUCAP Sahel Niger has reportedly trained 13,000 Nigerien security forces in areas including document fraud, investigative and surveillance techniques and forensics.[67] The latest mandate is now to include a more operational training approach of “follow-up and support” (“suivi et accompagnement”), in which European police officers directly support their Nigerien colleagues in their daily work.[68] Since its establishment, the mission has grown steadily, both financially and in terms of personnel. At present, some 130 European security experts from 15 EU states and about 70 Nigerien employees work there.[69] The budget rose from around 8.7 million euros in 2012[70] to 63.4 million euros for the two-year period of its fourth mandate.[71]

The direct involvement of European police officers in Nigerien police work is the basis of the EUTF-funded “Equipe Conjointe d’Investigation” (11.5 million euros), in which Spanish, French and Nigerien police officers conduct joint investigations. Inspired by a similar Spanish-Mauritanian project for the closure of the Canary Islands route (“Mécanisme de Réaction Rapide”), the joint police investigations are intended to dismantle entire networks of traffickers by “peer coaching” the entire criminal prosecution instead of addressing individual traffickers.[72] The EU celebrates the ECI as a successful project, having led to 266 arrests and uncovered 69 criminal networks as of September 2019.[73] The project is led by the Fundación Internacional y para Iberoamérica de Administración y Políticas Públicas (FIIAPP), a public foundation of the Spanish state that is involved in public sector reforms worldwide. The contract amendment envisages the use of drones, IMSI-Catcher telephone monitoring devices, database analyses as well as supplementing a new telephone tapping centre in Niamey.[74]

The EUTF AJUSEN programme is geared towards direct budget support and training. It provides the Nigerien state with 80 million euros in budget support for 2016-2020, which is intended to strengthen state institutions in the areas of security, border control, justice and public finances.[75] The budget support, which is largely financed by Italy,[76] is linked to progress in the fight against irregular migration.[77] It is also intended for the purchase of “non-lethal” security equipment.[78] On the other hand, a further 10 million euros will be used to organise training for the Nigerien judiciary and eight different security forces, including on border management.[79] The training courses in the field of justice will be organised by the French development agency AFD (6 million euros) and will serve to strengthen the justice system in the fight against irregular migration, human trafficking and other transnational crimes. The security training is organised by Civipol, a semi-private French company, partly owned by the French arms manufacturers Thales, Airbus and Safran, and which has had a role in influencing the externalisation policy of the EU Commission.[80] Its activities are aimed at the Police, Gendarmerie and National Guard, but also at the Secret Service and the Customs Service.[81]

Frontex and several European security forces have placed liaison officers in Niger, including Spain and the German Federal Police. The EU also has a liaison officer for migration issues (EMLO). In addition, several experts have been placed directly with the Nigerien authorities and some European embassies have migration experts. They all try to cooperate closely with the Nigerien authorities on migration issues, with more or less direct influence.

The Frontex Liaison Officer, in Niger since August 2017, is one of three Frontex Liaison Officers outside of the EU – alongside Turkey and Serbia. This shows that Niger is a central cooperation partner for Frontex along the central Mediterranean route. The local contact for Frontex is in particular the Border and Migration Police DST.[82] Furthermore, since 2010, Niger has been a member of the Africa-Frontex Intelligence Community (AFIC), a network on migrant smuggling and border security founded by Frontex and 26 African states in 2010. In the framework of this network, Frontex established the first of eight Risk Analysis Cells in Niamey at the end of 2018 in order to collect and analyse data on cross-border crimes such as irregular border crossings, document forgery and human trafficking in various African countries. The aim is to share information and provide guidance to national and regional border authorities and Frontex.[83] These analyses are also based on biometric data[84], according to a Frontex document on MIDAS, PISCES and Securiport, which is used in Mali. The information collected by the national AFIC risk analysis cells will be shared with Frontex on an EU digital platform. The project is funded with 4 million euros from the EU Commission’s Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development (DG DEVCO).[85]

Border management and innovative border technologies

For border management in Niger, new, mobile (para)military and police border units are increasingly being created and the border infrastructure is being strengthened. The background to these attempts at control is that Niger has 5,700 km of mostly little demarcated and controlled borders, often in inaccessible areas and increasingly affected by conflict.

In the project “GAR-SI Sahel” (Groupes d’Action Rapides – Surveillance et Intervention au Sahel), mobile, multidisciplinary Gendarmerie units are being set up in the G5 countries – Niger, Burkina Faso, Mauritania, Mali, Chad and Senegal – under the leadership of the Spanish Civil Guard with the aim of securing the borders and combatting migrant smuggling, human trafficking, drugs and arms trafficking. These units are based on the model of the security forces that fought against ETA in Spain[86]. The cost of the EUTF-funded project already amounts to 66.6 million euros. The project is also implemented by the Spanish FIIAPP. In Niger, Rapid Action Groups have participated in patrols in the border regions with Burkina Faso and Mali since their launch in 2019, and statistics show that they have detected weapons and explosive devices, but not traffickers or migrants.[87] Rapid Action Groups are also said to be equipped with drones and night vision devices.[88]

The IOM’s “Immigration and Border Management” (IBM) programme[89] has been in place since 2015, funded by the EU, USA, Canada and Japan (with USD 5,083,184 in 2017) with the aim of strengthening border controls. This will be achieved by building new border posts and equipping them with IOM’s MIDAS biometric system and by training security forces.[90] The approach of the IOM programme is to extend the border to the entire territory and multiply controls.[91] To this end, the population living close to the border will be integrated into community policing programmes, reporting ‘suspicious’ border movements to the security authorities. In addition, a prototype for a mobile border post was developed for use in the desert.[92] This is a highly equipped 6×4 off-road Kamaz truck, equipped with two offices, solar panels, wind turbine, generator, water tank, pick-up truck and motorcycle, as well as the MIDAS biometric system and the CODAN communication system, which should be able to remain autonomously in the field for 5-8 days. However, it is unclear how suitable the vehicle, which costs around 100,000 euros, will be for use in conflict zones.[93] The IOM is cooperating with the Portuguese emergency vehicle manufacturer Futurvida[94], Motorola and others.

This approach of multiplied and mobile border controls is also followed by EUCAP Sahel Niger which, in 2018 alone, provided security forces with equipment worth 4.9 million euros.[95] In total, 31 border control stations were equipped and the introduction of the WAPIS biometric system was supported.[96] In 2019, a further 32 technically upgraded containers were added to reinforce the police stations along the access roads to the capital Niamey and along the migration routes to Libya and Algeria.[97] EUCAP has supplied security forces with mobile garages to increase the autonomy of operations in remote terrain like the desert.[98] In addition, EUCAP has particularly appropriated the model of mobile border control units “Compagnie Mobile du Contrôle Frontalier”(CMCF), which was introduced by the US Army in 2016. The first unit, financed by the US and supervised by the US Army and the FBI, consists of 250 police agents in Maradi, a trade and migration hub on the border with Nigeria. In the first eight months of 2018, the unit referred 110 people to the prosecuting authorities, including some for attempted illegal entry.[99] Inspired by this approach, EUCAP Sahel Niger has supported a second mobile police unit of 252 police agents to be set up in another border town with Nigeria, Birni-N’Konni, in October 2019.[100] It will be trained and equipped by EUCAP with the participation of several European security forces and Frontex,[101] and financed by Germany (6 million euros) and the Netherlands (4 million euros).[102] A third unit is planned for the city of Zinder.[103] EUCAP Sahel Niger calls the unit “innovative, Nigerien and close to people”. The aim is to improve tactical control, secure Nigerian borders even under difficult conditions and to fight cross-border crime and especially irregular migration.[104]

The German Development Agency GIZ programme “Support to the African Union Border Programme” (2008-2019, financed by the German Federal Foreign Office) supports border management in 18 African countries. In Niger, the project has, among other things, demarcated the borders with Algeria, Benin, Burkina Faso and Nigeria and assisted the National Border Commission in formulating the 2019-2035 National Border Policy and its action plan, which was adopted in October 2019.[105] The funds for Niger in the third project phase amount to 10.45 million euros[106], which is significantly more than for the other countries involved in the project.[107]

The GIZ Police Programme Africa”, which has been operating in Niger since 2013 (budget 2016-2019: Federal Foreign Office: 5.8 million euros, EU: 0.8 million euros), is committed to developing and strengthening the (border) police in Niger through reform processes, training and the provision of materials, including for border security.[108] In this context, the GIZ has also built eleven border posts on the border with Nigeria as of 2018 and equipped them with motorcycles, vehicles and computers.[109] It also developed training modules for border security and supplied equipment for the forensic laboratory of the Police.[110] The programme is being financed by the German Federal Foreign Office. It’s third phase until 2019 amounted to 39.7 million euros for a total of six countries and three regional organisations.[111] In total, funding between 2013 and 2017 amounted to more than 90 million euros.[112]

The EU is also providing 363 million euros to support the creation of a military task force, the G5 Sahel Joint Force, to combat human trafficking and other organised crime and terrorism in the border areas of the Sahel states. It is largely made up of military personnel from the five participating Sahel countries and is also supported by EUCAP Sahel Niger and the other two CSDP missions in the Sahel. The project is partly managed by the development cooperation agencies Expertise France and GIZ.[113] In addition, several European military forces and the USA have established bases or stationed training missions in Niger, and their presence is being met with resistance from Nigerien civil society. Even if these missions do not explicitly work on migration, they inscribe themselves in the militarisation of border zones, which are seen as places of instability.

Return programmes and development projects as alternatives to migration

Two IOM projects funded by the EUTF are organising the ‘voluntary’ return of migrants from Niger to their countries of origin for a total of 22 million euros (MRRM – 7 million euros, SURENI – 15 million euros). In conjunction with promoting the return, funding covers the accommodation and assistance in the six transit centres in Niger, sensitisation of (potential) migrants, rescue operations, monitoring of migration routes, support of state structures and reintegration. The projects build on earlier phases of funding, financed by Italy, the United Kingdom and the EU.[114] There are also reintegration programmes for Nigerien migrants financed by several European countries.[115] Reintegration aims at creating income alternatives to (re)migration.

In addition, there are development programmes for the conversion of former “migration actors”, for the prevention of migration or the cushioning of the effects of transit migration in the Nigerien population in the central regions of origin and transit of migrants in Agadez, Tahoua and Zinder. This is classical development work, in which attempts are being made to provide short-term work measures and/or build up long-term employment prospects through infrastructure measures, agriculture, vocational training and the establishment of businesses. According to the EUTF, 5,558 jobs had been created in Niger by March 2019, of which about one quarter are short-term cash-for-work programmes.[116] It is questionable how sustainable these development projects are as an alternative to the long-term established circular migration as an adaptation strategy to the difficult seasonal working and living conditions in the Sahel.[117] The EUTF is investing almost 100 million euros in this area, which is managed through the bilateral cooperation agencies of France, Germany, Belgium, the Netherlands, Italy and Luxembourg as well as the Nigerien Haute Autorité de la Consolidation de la Paix (HACP). In addition, there are two “Community Stabilizing” projects of the IOM, financed by the Federal Foreign Office[118] and the EU-IOM Migration Joint Initiative[119].

In the process, these projects cause in some cases major shifts in the political landscape of Niger. The financially strong GIZ “ProGEM” project (EUTF: 25 million euros, BMZ: 3.5 million euros) supports the local authorities by setting up observatories with other partners to analyse the effects of migration on their communities.[120] In Agadez, for example, the mayor held the migrants responsible for the structural waste problem in the city.[121] Migration thus becomes a local political problem, where structural deficits are at least partially attributed to migrants, whereupon these findings are fed into federal politics.

These work programmes hardly concern the actual “migration actors” directly involved in the transit economy. The PAIERA project (EUTF: 8 million euros) is directly aimed at drivers and intermediaries. However, by the end of 2018, only 371 of the more than 6,500 migration service providers had received non-cash benefits of around €1,500 each for setting up a business.[122]

Three other EUTF projects focus on the resilience of the local population, refugees and internally displaced persons in the eastern region of Diffa affected by Boko Haram and in the border region with Mali. In Diffa, the biometric registration of the population is also being financed.[123] These projects also support the approach of preventing further migration of the refugees. In another project, the UNHCR is working with the IOM to evacuate vulnerable people from Libyan prisons to Niger and to process their asylum and resettlement applications there.[124] Niger was the first country to agree to such an evacuation mechanism (“Emergency Transit Mechanism”) as a supposed solution to the problem of those detained in Libya with European funds. To date, only around 2,900 people have been evacuated to Niger between the end of 2017 and the end of 2019, and 1,800 of these have been subsequently resettled.[125]

Agreements and their effects

Migration cooperation between Niger and the EU is based on the Cotonou Agreement of 2000, followed by the Rabat process (2006) and the Valletta Summit (2015). In 2016, the EU Commission selected Niger as one of five African countries for a migration partnership promising privileged cooperation and financial support within the framework of a tailor-made agreement.[126] The consequences of this cooperation were hailed by the EU as “emblematic of the opportunities in a transit country”.[127] It has triggered numerous political and institutional shifts in Niger. So far, the focus has been on combating irregular migration. First of all, a short-term, European-funded action plan was launched to implement the existing Anti-Smuggling Act 2015-036 and the Regulation against Human Trafficking 2010-86.[128] In September 2017, with the participation of EUCAP Sahel Niger, a national strategy for internal security and its action plan were first adopted, which was also a condition for EU budget support.[129] In March 2018, a national strategy to combat irregular migration was then adopted. It was written with the help of the Vienna-based think tank International Centre for Migration Policy Development (ICMPD)[130] and it aims to reduce irregular migration through stronger border management, stronger repression of smugglers, prevention and awareness-raising, protection of victims and promotion of the return and reintegration of migrants.[131] However, in May 2019, the technical and funding partners criticised that the associated action plan had not yet been implemented.[132] In October 2019, the national border policy for 2019-2035 and its action plan were adopted, which were supported by GIZ.[133] These policy projects primarily involve a repressive, security policy approach to migration.

A broader national migration policy is still under development. Niger had already set up an inter-ministerial committee for this purpose in 2007, but this attempt failed over time, partly due to lack of funds.[134] GIZ is now supporting the formulation of this national migration policy both technically and financially with its project “Migration Policy Advice” (2017-2020, 3 million euros from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development).[135] The national security and defence policy is currently being developed by the Centre national d’études stratégiques et de sécurité (CNESS).

As part of the “mixed migration” approach, from 2017 onwards, the UNHCR focused more on refugee protection on the now partly blocked migration routes and strengthened access to the asylum procedure and the assistance of refugees in Agadez and Niamey. At the end of 2017, a memorandum between the UNHCR and the Nigerien state started a program to evacuate asylum seekers and refugees from Libya to Niger (Emergency Transit Mechanism). Here too, Niger is considered an alternative to the central Mediterranean route. In 2019, the revision of Niger’s asylum law from 1997 also began with support from the UNHCR.

Readmission agreements and deportations

The situation of the readmission agreements with Niger is very opaque. It is known that Niger concluded a migration and readmission agreement with Spain in 2008.[136] There is a cooperation agreement with Italy in the security sector.[137] It is also suspected that there are more informal, non-standardised readmission agreements with European states and/or the EU.[138] After his visit to Niger in October 2018, the UN Rapporteur on the Rights of Migrants criticized the lack of transparency and accountability for these agreements, contrary to international standards.[139] According to incomplete EU statistics, 75 Nigeriens have been deported between 2014-2018 and 85 returned through voluntary return programmes.[140] France carried out most of the deportations, although statistics are not available for some countries such as Germany. The return policy is less relevant for the EU, because there are only a few Nigeriens in Europe.[141] Only about 6,000 Nigeriens, for example, have a residence permit in the EU. Most of them live in France, Italy and Belgium.[142] However, European security forces informally complained about the lack of cooperation of the Nigerien state in deportations from Europe.

In addition, Niger concluded an informal readmission agreement with Algeria in 2014, which allowed Algeria to deport 3,000 Nigeriens. The Nigerien consulate in Algeria checks the identity of the citizens before the departure of the deportation convoys.

According to the statistics of the Nigerian border police DST, 5,194 persons were refused entry into Niger in 2018 (“refoulement”) and 4,819 were deported (“reconduite à la frontière”). However, in view of the current presence of some 30 border posts along 5,700 km of border, the borders are comparatively porous and irregular entry is easier.

Niger has occasionally carried out unlawful extraditions of asylum seekers and refugees. The most famous case is the son of former Libyan President Gaddafi. He was first granted refugee status by the Nigerien political elite, but because of increasing political pressure and presumably immense sums of money, they finally handed him over without trial to the Libyan unity government in 2014, which imprisoned and tortured him.[143] In 2017/18, three Chadian opposition members were also extradited to Chad without trial and held there under extreme detention conditions, which led to the death of one detainee.[144] 132 Sudanese asylum seekers who had fled Libya to Agadez were deported to Libya by the Nigerien state in 2018 in an illegal mass deportation.[145] The UNHCR resorted to direct negotiations with the authorities in order to avoid the deportation of women, children and family fathers and subsequently to prevent a repetition of such a push-back.

What role do (which) NGOs play?

Because the IOM largely dominates the migration sector, the role of NGOs in Niger is less prominent. They are often used as implementing partners in the area of migration control for awareness-raising activities aimed at informing (potential) migrants about risks and thus deterring them from migrating (especially Comitato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo dei Popoli (CISP), Catholic Relief Service). The Nigerien NGO Jeunesse-Enfance-Migration-Développement (JMED) is also active in this area, but also campaigns for the rights of migrants. Like all NGOs, it remains financially dependent on the mostly European donors. The NGO network REMIDDH (Réseau Migration-Développement-Droits Humains) has received funding from the GIZ project “Migration Policy Advice”, although its activities are unclear.

Several NGOs carry out monitoring at the borders and on migration routes (Danish Refugee Council, Comité International pour l’Aide d’Urgence et le Développement (CIAUD)). Globally active humanitarian NGOs are particularly active in the field of health care (Red Cross, Médecins Sans Frontières) and family reunification (CICR).

In the field of refugee migration, the NGO Action Pour le Bien Etre (APBE), which is said to be close to the First Lady of Niger, has proved to be a key actor in camp management and also in raising awareness and identifying potential asylum seekers on the migration routes. The Italian NGO COOPI-Cooperazione Internazionale has made a special name for itself in the field of psychosocial services.

Economic interests? Who benefits?

Defence Industry

The security migration partnership often benefits European and international arms companies that provide the relevant equipment. In 2018, for example, the then President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, travelled to Niger with a business delegation that included representatives of the Belgian arms manufacturer CMI, the French security company Amarante International and the Hungarian biometrics manufacturer ANY Biztonsagi Nyomda.[146] Mr Tajani presented Niger with “opportunities for cooperation in security, border control, aviation and agriculture through the EU, EGNOS, Galileo and Copernicus satellite systems”[147]. Lists of supply contracts for EUCAP Sahel Niger can be found online.[148] Meanwhile, the armies of the USA and France are also deploying armed Reaper drones in Niger.[149]

Biometrics

In the field of biometrics, there has been a multiplication of projects in Niger in recent years. Their relevance is sometimes questionable and suggests that biometrics is not only a lucrative business for international security firms, but also an attractive target for corruption. This became clear in July 2019 when the biometric driving licence was introduced. Protests on social media about the immense costs and the sense of the change led to investigations by the anti-corruption agency HALCIA, which, among other things, revealed the involvement of the family of the Minister of Transport in the business.[150]

Similarly, the relevance of introducing biometric voters’ cards until the presidential elections 2020/2021 is also controversial, and the EU has also spoken out against funding as long as there is no performing civil state.[151] In the last elections only about 30% of Nigeriens were able to present identity documents.[152] Nevertheless, the Dutch security giant Gemalto, which has been part of the French arms group Thales since 2019, is now working on this for around 30.5 million euros. Gemalto has already carried out similar projects in other African countries.[153]

Since 2013, passports have also been made biometric and are printed for a locally high consumer price of over 50 euros by the Indian company Contec Global, which is also implementing similar projects in other African countries.[154] A previous contract worth 53 million euros with the Lebanese company Africard was cancelled by Niger in 2012[155], for which Niger was finally sentenced to pay compensation of around 8.3 million euros after a bitter, transnational legal dispute.[156]

In addition, three different biometric migration-related databases are in use in Niger. When entering Niger by land, the data is entered into IOM’s MIDAS biometric database at the few technical border posts that have been set up to date. When entering Niger by plane, the data is entered into the US database PISCES, which is linked to Interpol. In addition, there is the West African crime database WAPIS, run by Interpol and financed by the European Development Fund, for the introduction of which Niger was a pilot country. The extended mandate of Frontex currently under discussion is intended to allow access to these West African databases and thus, among other things, to promote deportations from Europe. This is likely to result in blatant violations of data protection for the persons concerned.[157] However, the interoperability between the databases had to be elaborately established with EU funding.[158] In addition, there are the two in-house biometrics systems of the UN agencies – MARS of IOM and proGres of the UNHCR.

Even though the large number of these projects points to the immense investments and profits of the partners, the (biometric) identification and control of the population has only just begun. Currently, travelling courts (“audiences foraines”) are being carried out to increase the civil registration of the population.[159] Apart from voting cards, driver’s licenses and passports, the Nigerien identity card will in the foreseeable future be a paper card without an expiry date, which is often not recognized when travelling to ECOWAS countries.

State and private actors

Weakened by internal and external threats, the Nigerien government is willing to engage in security cooperation with the EU.[160] The fight against irregular migration is one way of attracting further material support for the country’s security forces and strengthening the claim to power over the territory. The comparatively high level of direct budget support – among other things through the budget support of EU development cooperation and the EUTF project AJUSEN – the high-tech donations and training aid provided by the various projects strengthen the government in its security policy approach. These resources can also be used against the opposition, against the rural population classified as terrorists or even against protesting refugees. Hardly anything seems to be done against the corruption of the security forces towards migrants. The Nigerien security apparatus stands as the big winner of the migration partnership – and with it the Minister of the Interior and presidential candidate Mohamed Bazoum. Among the non-state actors, the EUTF’s main recipients of funds are the IOM (387 million euros) and the development cooperation projects of Germany, France and Italy.[161] Semi-private security companies such as Civipol and FIIAPP are also major beneficiaries of the cooperation. Civipol is involved in two national projects in Niger and a total of nine EUTF projects coming up to over 100 million euros[162] – and thus also its shareholder arms companies Thales, Airbus and Safran. The Spanish FIIAPP is involved in two Nigerien projects and a total of four EUTF projects with a volume of over 120 million euros.[163]

What are the consequences?

The blocked migration routes have made migration to the Maghreb riskier, longer and more expensive. In addition to the West and Central African transit migrants, this also affects Nigeriens themselves. Given the importance of (circular) labour migration in the Maghreb for the economies of Niger and West Africa, this must be accompanied by major economic losses for mostly very marginalised groups. For all members of the West African community of states, this means a severe curtailment of their right to freedom of movement in Niger and thus a reduction of their rights and mobility.

For refugees, this criminalisation of transit migration means that they may have to seek asylum in Niger or in a neighbouring country. This may entail protection risks such as for those suffering persecution based on homosexuality and gender, long procedures with few procedural guarantees, and very limited chances of survival.[164]

For municipalities in northern Niger the loss of the transit economy meant the loss of one of the few sources of disposable income. This has by no means been cushioned by development projects on alternative sources of income. This is associated with a possible political destabilisation in the north of Niger and in the Sahel.[165]

It is also becoming politically apparent that a migration partnership with its “best pupil” may be more valuable for Europe than publicly expressing criticism of authoritarian and human rights violations of Nigerien politicians and authorities. In 2018, the imprisonment of civil society leaders during protests against the budget law and the expatriation of the critical journalist Baba Alpha remained uncommented.[166]

What resistance is there?

At the beginning of the implementation of the Anti-Smuggling Act 2015-36 there was much criticism in the centrally affected region of Agadez. Criminalized smugglers joined together in a committee and fought for their compensation. However, with the increasing consolidation of migration control and the involvement of local authorities in this policy, this resistance has now weakened. In 2018 and 2019, asylum-seekers organised protests in Agadez and Niamey on several occasions, mainly to advocate the (accelerated) processing of their asylum applications and resettlement procedures and for access to durable solutions. However, these protests were sometimes brutally crushed by the police. There were also repeated protests in IOM transit centres due to the inadequate treatment and sometimes lengthy return procedures. In the meantime, Nigerien civil society has protested several times against the presence of foreign military bases.

Some refugees and migrants are organised in associations to represent their interests. As organisations, Alternative Espaces Citoyen, Loujna Tounkaranké, Alarme Phone Sahara and the priest Mauro Armanino in particular are critical of migration policy and organise public events on the subject. At the University of Abdou Moumouni, the research group GERMES (Groupes d’études et de Recherche Migrations, Espaces et Sociétés) was founded to promote critical analyses of migration policy and to train students.

Migration statistics

Entering Niger 2018 1.844.6611[167]
Exits from Niger 2018 1.654.1011[168]
Deported to Niger 2018 15,896 (thereof 9,191 non-Nigeriens)[169]
Internal migrants (2001, in %) 7,9%[170]
Number of international asylum seekers and refugees in the country (10/2019) 222.869[171]
Nigerien refugees worldwide 1.235[172]
IDPs (10/2019) 187.359[173]
Asylum applications in the EU 2015-2018 2.410[174]
Asylum recognition rate in the EU-28 (in %, 2018) 31.5%[175]
Deportations of Nigeriens from 25 EU countries 2014-2018 75[176]
Migrants returned from Niger by IOM (2018) 14.977[177]
Nigerians returned to Niger by IOM (05/2017-08/2019) 6.230[178]
Nigeriens ‘voluntarily’ returned from Europe (2014-2018) 85[179]
Detention of Migrants In police stations[180]
Offence of illegal departure

 

Materials and Sources

Boyer, Florence (2019): Sécurité, développement, protection. Le triptyque de l’externalisation des politiques migratoires au Niger. Hérodote 172, 169-189.

Boyer, Florence;Chappart, Pascaline (2018): Les frontières européennes au Niger. Vacarme 83, 98.

Boyer, Florence; Chappart, Pascaline (2018): Les enjeux de la protection au Niger. Les nouvelles impasses politiques du « transit » ? In Mouvements. Available online at http://mouvements.info/les-enjeux-de-la-protection-au-niger.

Boyer, Florence; Mounkaila, Harouna (2018): Européanisation des politiques migratoires au Sahel. Le Niger dans l’imbroglio sécuritaire. In Emmanuel Grégoire, Jean-François Kobiané, Marie-France Lange (Eds.): L’État réhabilité en Afrique. Réinventer les politiques publiques à l’ère néolibérale. Paris: Karthala (Hommes et sociétés), pp.267–285.

Brachet, Julien (2009): Migrations transsahariennes. Vers un désert cosmopolite et morcelé (Niger). Bellecombe-en-Bauges: Croquant (Collection Terra).

CONCORD (2018): Partnership or conditionality? Monitoring the Migration Compacts and EU Trust Fund for Africa, 23.

Dan Dah, Laouali Mahaman (2018): Migration Niger 2017. Version préliminaire. July 2018.

Frowd, Philippe M. (2019): Producing the ‘transit’ migration state: international security intervention in Niger, Third World Quarterly. Ahead of print.

Hamadou, Abdoulaye (2018): La gestion des flux migratoires au Niger entre engagements et contraintes. In Revue des droits de l’homme (14), 11.

Jegen, Leonie; Zanker, Franziska (2019): European dominance of migration policy in Niger. „On a fait les filles avant la mère“ . MEDAM Policy Brief 3/2019, 6.

Lambert, Laura (2019): Asyl im Niger – politische Rolle und lokale Adaptionen des Flüchtlingsschutzes. in Konfliktfeld Fluchtmigration. Historische und ethnographische Perspektiven, ed. by Johler, Reingard/Lange, Jan (ed.):. Bielefeld: Transcript, 191-205.

Tinti, Peter; Reitano, Tuesday (2017): Migrant, Refugee, Smuggler, Saviour. London: Hurst & Company.

UN Human Rights Council (2019): Visit to the Niger. 16.05.2019. A/HRC/41/38/Add.1.

Footnotes

[1] Boyer/Chappart, Pascaline (2018): European borders in Niger. Vacarme 83, 98.

[2] https://freedomhouse.org/country/niger/freedom-world/2019

[3] https://nigerdiaspora.net/index.php/politique-niger/7530-avec-ou-sans-opposition-le-niger-ira-aux-urnes-en-2020-abdourahaman-zakaria-porte-parole-du-gouvernement

[4] https://www.dw.com/de/issoufous-erste-amtszeit-entt%C3%A4uschte-hoffnungen-im-niger/a-19052489

[5] Tinti, Peter; Reitano, Tuesday (2017): Migrant, Refugee, Smuggler, Saviour. London: Hurst & Company, 180.

[6] Jeune Afrique (2019): https://www.jeuneafrique.com/424251/politique/niger-president-issoufou-assure-quil-ne-briguera-de-troisieme-mandat/ Jeune Afrique (2018): Ten things to know about Mohamed Bazoum, the Minister of the Interior. https://www.jeuneafrique.com/mag/622894/politique/niger-dix-choses-a-savoir-sur-mohamed-bazoum-le-ministre-de-linterieur/

[7] OCHA (2019): Niger. Rapport de situation. Yuin 2019. https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/Rapport%20de%20situation%20-%20Niger%20-%2011%20juin%202019.pdf

[8] http://hdr.undp.org/en/countries/profiles/NER

[9] http://www.finances.gouv.ne/index.php/une/575-assemblee-nationale-adoption-du-budget-2019-equilibre-en-recettes-et-en-depenses-a-2-050-757-744-384-fcfa

[10] CIA World Factbook (2019). https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ng.html

[11] Dan Dah, Laouali Mahaman (2018): Migration Niger 2017. Version préliminaire. July 2018, 13. https://www.jeuneafrique.com/706613/societe/le-niger-et-litalie-saluent-la-chute-du-flux-de-migrants-africains-vers-leurope/

[12] Vgl. Philippe M. Frowd (2019): Producing the ‘transit’ migration state: international security intervention in Niger, Third World Quarterly. Ahead of Print.

[13] Boyer, Florence; Mounkaila, Harouna (2018): Europeanization of migration policies in the Sahel. Niger in the security imbroglio. In Emmanuel Grégoire, Jean-François Kobiané, Marie-France Lange (Eds. ): The rehabilitated state in Africa. Reinventing public policy in the neo-liberal era. Paris: Karthala (Hommes et sociétés), pp.267-285.

[14] Boyer, Florence; Mounkaila, Harouna (2018): Europeanization of migration policies in the Sahel. Niger in the security imbroglio. In Emmanuel Grégoire, Jean-François Kobiané, Marie-France Lange (Eds.): The rehabilitated state in Africa. Reinventing public policy in the neo-liberal era. Paris: Karthala (Hommes et sociétés), pp.267-285. Boyer, Florence (2019): Security, Development, Protection. The triptych of the externalisation of migration policies in Niger. Herodotus 172, 184.

[15] Brachet, Julien (2009): Trans-Saharan migration. Towards a cosmopolitan and fragmented desert (Niger). Bellecombe-en-Bauges: Croquant (Collection Terra), 25-49. Boyer, Florence; Mounkaila, Harouna (2018): Européanisation des politiques migratoires au Sahel. Le Niger dans l’imbroglio sécuritaire. In Emmanuel Grégoire, Jean-François Kobiané, Marie-France Lange (Eds.): The rehabilitated state in Africa. Reinventing public policy in the neo-liberal era. Paris: Karthala (Hommes et sociétés), pp.267-285.

[16] Molenaar, Fransje; El Kamouni-Janssen, Floor (2017): Turning the tide. The politics of irregular migration in the Sahel and Libya. Clingendael Institute, 2.

[17] Jeune Afrique, 01.11.2013: Niger: National mourning after the death of 92 migrants, mostly women and children. https://www.jeuneafrique.com/167492/politique/niger-deuil-national-apr-s-la-mort-de-92-migrants-femmes-et-enfants-pour-la-plupart/

[18] Alternative Citizen Spaces (2017): Mata masu tafiya. Women take to the road. Movie.

[19] Interviews Zinder, 04/2019.

[20] Dan Dah, Laouali Mahaman (2018): Migration Niger 2017. Version préliminaire. July 2018, 53.

[21] Boyer, Florence; Mounkaila, Harouna (2018): Europeanization of migration policies in the Sahel. Niger in the security imbroglio. In Emmanuel Grégoire, Jean-François Kobiané, Marie-France Lange (Eds.): The rehabilitated state in Africa. Reinventing public policy in the neo-liberal era. Paris: Karthala (Hommes et sociétés), pp.267-285.

[22] IOM(2018): Flow Monitoring Point Statistics. Overview 2016-2017: Niger https://drive.google.com/file/d/1_D0z65Xw2p2ReSjkPdR8dffLh8N4TipF/view

[23] IOM(2018): Flow Monitoring Point Statistics. Overview 2016-2017: Niger.

[24] EUReporter: Tajani visit to #Niger. 95% decrease in migration flows to Libya and Europe thanks to EU partnership and funds. https://www.eureporter.co/frontpage/2018/07/16/tajani-visit-to-niger-95-decrease-in-migration-flows-to-libya-and-europe-thanks-to-eu-partnership-and-funds/

[25] UN Human Rights Council (2019): Visit to the Niger. 16.05.2019. A/HRC/41/38/Add.1.

[26] UN Rapporteur (2018): End of mission statement of the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights of Migrants, Felipe González Morales, during his visit to Niger. 08.10.2018

[27] https://ffm-online.org/agadez-es-ist-als-haette-man-uns-die-luft-zugeschnuert/?highlight=Agadez

[28] Deputy Director of Territorial Surveillance, Niamey, 28.01.2019.

[29] Lambert, Laura (2019): Asyl im Niger – politische Rolle und lokale Adaptionen des Flüchtlingsschutzes. in Konfliktfeld Fluchtmigration. Historische und ethnographische Perspektiven, ed. by Johler, Reingard/Lange, Jan (ed.). Bielefeld: Transcript, 191-205, 108.

[30] https://data2.unhcr.org/en/country/ner

[31] http://data.un.org/Data.aspx?d=UNHCR&f=indID%3aType-Ref%3boriID%3angr%3byr%3a2016&c=0,1,2,3,4,5,6&s=yr:desc,asyEngName:asc,oriEngName:asc&v=1

[32] Boyer, Florence; Mounkaila, Harouna (2018): Europeanization of migration policies in the Sahel. Niger in the security imbroglio. In Emmanuel Grégoire, Jean-François Kobiané, Marie-France Lange (Eds.): The rehabilitated state in Africa. Reinventing public policy in the neo-liberal era. Paris: Karthala (Hommes et sociétés), pp.267-285

[33] IOM (2018): MRRM Monthly results. December 2018. http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/sites/default/files/IOM%20Niger%20%20Migration%20Response%20%20Infosheet%20%20-December%202018%20-%20EN%20revised.pdf

[34] http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/en/Our-work/assisted-voluntary-return

[35] IOM (2019): Return and reintegration key highlights 2018.

[36] UN Human Rights Council (2019): Visit to the Niger. 16.05.2019. A/HRC/41/38/Add.1.

[37] Statistics presented at the Cadre de Concertation sur la Migration, 12.06.2019.

[38] IOM (2019) Statistical Summary of Returns from Algeria. http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/sites/default/files/IOM%20Niger%20-%20Statistical%20summary%20of%20convoys%20of%20Algeria%20-%20Dashboard%20-%20EN%20-%202019%2002%2004.pdf. Le Monde, 13.01.2019: Les migrantes saisonnières, fragiles victimes des refoulements d’Algérie. https://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2019/01/13/les-migrantes-saisonnieres-fragiles-victimes-des-refoulements-d-algerie_5408535_3212.html.

[39] IOM (2019) Statistical Summary of Returns from Algeria. http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/sites/default/files/IOM%20Niger%20-%20Statistical%20summary%20of%20convoys%20of%20Algeria%20-%20Dashboard%20-%20EN%20-%202019%2002%2004.pdf. Le Monde, 13.01.2019: Les migrantes saisonnières, fragiles victimes des refoulements d’Algérie. https://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2019/01/13/les-migrantes-saisonnieres-fragiles-victimes-des-refoulements-d-algerie_5408535_3212.html.

[40] https://reliefweb.int/report/algeria/unhcr-appeals-access-refugees-algeria-niger-border-enar

[41] AP News, 26.06.2018: https://apnews.com/9ca5592217aa4acd836b9ee091ebfc20

[42] MSF(2019): Niger: MSF works on migration routes in the Agadez region. https://www.msf.fr/actualites/niger-msf-intervient-sur-les-routes-migratoires-dans-la-region-d-agadez

[43] Danida (2019): Niger. https://niger.dk/danish-red-cross/

[44] IOM Niger (2019): Opening of the first reception center for victims of trafficking in the Zinder region. http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/en/Media/Press/opening-first-reception-center-victims-trafficking-zinder-region

[45] IOM Niger (2019): Humanitarian Rescue Operations. Search and Rescue Operations. July 2019. http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/sites/default/files/IOM%20Niger%20-%20SAR%20-%20Humanitarian%20Rescue%20and%20Search%20and%20Rescue%20Dashboard%20-%20July%202019%20-%20EN.pdf

[46] https://www.reuters.com/article/us-europe-migrants-niger/desert-as-deadly-as-sea-for-surge-of-europe-bound-migrants-idUSKBN0O01TN20150515

[47] https://alarmephonesahara.info/

[48] http://www.finances.gouv.ne/index.php/une/575-assemblee-nationale-adoption-du-budget-2019-equilibre-en-recettes-et-en-depenses-a-2-050-757-744-384-fcfa

[49] EEAS (2016): Niger and the EU. https://eeas.europa.eu/headquarters/headquarters-homepage/4356/niger-and-eu_en

[50] EU (2019): EU-Niger relations. July 2019. https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/factsheet_eu_niger_fr.en19.pdf

[51] CONCORD (2018): Partnership or conditionality? Monitoring the Migration Compacts and EU Trust Fund for Africa, 23.

[52] https://ec.europa.eu/commission/eu-external-investment-plan/what-eus-external-investment-plan_en

[53] EU (2019): EU-Niger relations. July 2019. https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/factsheet_eu_niger_fr.en19.pdf

[54] Guilyardi, Catherine (2019): “L’externalisation de la frontière de l’Europe au Niger, laboratoire de l’asile”, Dossier “Réfugiés: du Niger à la Dordogne”, De facto, 10-11. http://icmigrations.fr/2019/08/07/defacto-ete-10/

[55] EU (2019): EU-Niger relations. July 2019. https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/factsheet_eu_niger_fr.en19.pdf

[56] https://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_MEMO-16-4375_en.htm

[57] cf. Philippe M. Frowd (2019): Producing the ‘transit’ migration state: international security intervention in Niger, Third World Quarterly. Ahead of print.

[58] EU Commission (2019): Niger. https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/region/sahel-lake-chad/ni.ger

[59] CONCORD (2018): Partnership or conditionality? Monitoring the Migration Compacts and EU Trust Fund for Africa, 24.

[60] Dan Dah, Laouali Mahaman (2018): Migration Niger 2017. Version préliminaire. July 2018, 26.

[61] https://www.passportindex.org/byRank.php

[62] Boyer/Chappart (2018): European borders in Niger. Vacarme 83, 98.

[63] Vgl. Dan Dah, Laouali Mahaman (2018): Migration Niger 2017. Version préliminaire. July 2018, 26. Abdelkader/Zangaou (2012): Wahaya. Domestic and sexual slavery in Niger. Association Timidria

[64] EEAS (2019): EU CSDP Missions and Operations for Human Security. https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/eu_csdp_missions_and_operations_may2019_web.pdf

[65] https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2015/05/13/eucap-sahel-niger/

[66] https://eeas.europa.eu/csdp-missions-operations/eucap-sahel-niger/3875/about-eucap-sahel-niger_en

[67] https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/eucap_sahel_niger_general_factsheet_en_2019.pdf

[68] https://www.niameysoir.com/communique-de-presse-la-chanceliere-allemande-angela-merkel-en-visite-a-eucap-sahel-niger/ cf. Boyer/Chappart (2018): European borders in Niger. Vacarme 83, 96.

[69] https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/20181105_factsheet_eucap_sahel_niger_en_nov_18.pdf

[70] https://publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201314/cmselect/cmeuleg/83-xviii/8322.htm

[71] https://www.consilium.europa.eu/de/press/press-releases/2018/09/18/eucap-sahel-niger-council-extends-the-mission-for-two-years/

[72] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/t05-eutf-sah-ne-05.pdf. See Boyer/Chappart 2018: 96.

[73] https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/central_med_route-rev.pdf gl. https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/all-news-and-stories/eu1155-million-enhance-security-migrant-protection-and-job-creation-sahel_en

[74] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/final_t05-eutf-sah-ne-05_eci_avenant_1.pdf

[75] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/eutf_slc_mls_2018_report.pdf

[76] CONCORD (2018): Partnership or conditionality? Monitoring the Migration Compacts and EU Trust Fund for Africa.

[77] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/eutf_slc_mls_2018_report.pdf

[78] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/t05-eutf-sah-ne-06_-_avenant_2_-_clean.pdf, 10.

[79] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/eutf_slc_mls_2018_report.pdf

[80] Akkerman, Mark (2018): Expanding the Fortress. The Policies, the Profiteers and the People Shaped by EU’s Border Externalisation Programme. Transnational Institute; Stop Wapenhandel. Amsterdam, 4.

[81] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/t05-eutf-sah-ne-06.pdf, 24.

[82] Frontex (2019): Risk Analysis for 2019. https://frontex.europa.eu/assets/Publications/Risk_Analysis/Risk_Analysis/Risk_Analysis_for_2019.pdf

[83] https://frontex.europa.eu/media-centre/news-release/frontex-opens-first-risk-analysis-cell-in-niger-HQIoKi

[84] https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/news-feature/2019/06/06/biometrics-new-frontier-eu-migration-policy-niger

[85] https://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/280219/au-niger-l-ue-mise-sur-la-police-locale-pour-traquer-les-migrants?onglet=full

[86] https://www.efe.com/efe/espana/politica/la-guardia-civil-clona-en-el-sahel-unidad-que-lucho-contra-eta/10002-3920185

[87] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/fa_finale_-_t05-eutf-sah-reg-04_gar-si_avenant_no_1.pdf

[88] https://privacyinternational.org/news-analysis/3223/europes-shady-funds-border-forces-sahel

[89] Dan Dah, Laouali Mahaman (2018): Migration Niger 2017. version préliminaire July 2018, 34.

[90] http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/sites/default/files/IOM%20NIGER%20-%20IBM%20-%20Infosheet%20-%20November%202017%20-%20ENG.pdf

[91] Boyer, Florence (2019): Security, development, protection. The triptych of the outsourcing of migration policies in Niger. Herodotus 172-174.

[92] http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/fr/Medias/Presse/remise-du-poste-fronti%C3%A8re-mobile-%C3%A0-la-direction-de-la-surveillance-du-territoire

[93] IOM-Präsentation auf der Konferenz “Cross-border cooperation and strengthening of health surveillance systems along the Mediterranean route”. Niamey, 28.01.2019.

[94] http://world-border-congress.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/BSRNovDec2018.pdf

[95] https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/eucap_sahel_niger_general_factsheet_en_2019.pdf

[96] https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/eucap_sahel_niger_general_factsheet_en_2019.pdf

[97] http://www.lesahel.org/index.php/2019/07/04/communique-de-presse-de-la-mission-eucap-sahel-niger-des-postes-de-police-aux-ficelles-rehabilites-et-equipes-a-mieux-securiser-lacces-a-la-capitale/

[98] http://www.anp.ne/?q=article/la-mission-eucap-sahel-niger-offre-des-garages-mobiles-aux-forces-de-defense-et-de-securite

[99] https://privacyinternational.org/news-analysis/3223/europes-shady-funds-border-forces-sahel

[100] https://eeas.europa.eu/csdp-missions-operations/eucap-sahel-niger/66750/eucap-sahel-niger-field-missions-border-management_en

[101] https://privacyinternational.org/news-analysis/3223/europes-shady-funds-border-forces-sahel

[102] https://privacyinternational.org/sites/default/files/2019-09/20190607%20CMCF%20Factsheet%20FR%281%29.pdf

[103] German Ambassador to the Cadre de Concertation sur la Migration. Niamey, June 12, 2019

[104] https://privacyinternational.org/sites/default/files/2019-09/20190607%20CMCF%20Factsheet%20FR%281%29.pdf
https://privacyinternational.org/sites/default/files/2019-09/20190607%20CMCF%20Factsheet%20FR%281%29.pdfhttps://www.niameysoir.com/communique-de-presse-la-chanceliere-allemande-angela-merkel-en-visite-a-eucap-sahel-niger/ EUCAP Sahel Niger, 18.03.2019, unter https://eeas.europa.eu/csdp-missions-operations/eucap-sahel-niger/60268/compagnie-mobile-pour-la-gestion-int%C3%A9gr%C3%A9e-de-fronti%C3%A8res_en

[105] http://www.anp.ne/?q=article/adoption-d-un-document-de-politique-nationale-des-frontieres-2019-2035-et-de-son-plan-d

[106] https://www.giz.de/de/downloads/giz2019-de-pfua-niger.pdf

[107] German Bundestag (2018): DS 19/2594.

[108] https://www.snrd-africa.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Wirkungsfactsheet-Niger_Herr-Preuss.pdf

[109] http://dip21.bundestag.de/dip21/btd/19/035/1903594.pdf

[110] Akkerman, Mark (2018): Expanding the Fortress. The Policies, the Profiteers and the People Shaped by EU’s Border Externalisation Programme. Transnational Institute; Stop Wapenhandel. Amsterdam, 68.

[111] https://dipbt.bundestag.de/dip21/btd/19/103/1910345.pdf

[112] http://dipbt.bundestag.de/dip21/btd/18/113/1811307.pdf

[113] https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/central_med_route-rev.pdf https://ec.europa.eu/transparency/regdoc/rep/3/2018/EN/C-2018-6822-F1-EN-ANNEX-2-PART-1.PD

[114] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/t05-eutf-sah-ne-01.pdf https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/t05-eutf-sah-ne-07-_migration.pdf

[115] For an overview see Dan Dah, Laouali Mahaman (2018): Migration Niger 2017, version préliminaire. July 2018.

[116] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/sites/euetfa/files/eutf_slc_2019-q1_report.pdf

[117] Boyer, Florence (2019): Security, development, protection. The triptych of the outsourcing of migration policies in Niger. Herodotus 172, 183.

[118] https://www.iom.int/fr/news/loim-lance-des-activites-de-stabilisation-communautaire-au-nord-du-niger

[119] https://migrationjointinitiative.org/fr/stabilisation-des-communautes

[120] https://www.snrd-africa.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Wirkungsfactsheet-Niger_Herr-Preuss.pdf

[121] Presentation by the Mayor of Agadez at the preparatory meeting of the Cadre de Concertation sur la Migration. Niamey, May 30, 2019.

[122] HACP (2018): Results Pilot Phase Conversion Plan.

[123] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/region/sahel-lake-chad/niger/renforcement-de-la-resilience-institutionnelle-et-communautaire-dans-la_en

[124] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/region/sahel-lake-chad/regional/protection-and-sustainable-solutions-migrants-and-refugees-along_en

[125] https://reliefweb.int/sites/reliefweb.int/files/resources/71683.pdf

[126] https://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-16-2072_en.htm

[127] https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/4th_progress_report_partnership_framework_with_third_countries_under_e uropean_agenda_on_migration.pdf

[128] https://eeas.europa.eu/sites/eeas/files/4th_progress_report_partnership_framework_with_third_countries_under_e uropean_agenda_on_migration.pdf

[129] https://issat.dcaf.ch/download/124574/2539953 https://www.eca.europa.eu/Lists/ECADocuments/SR18_15/SR_SAHEL_FR.pdf

[130] https://www.mieux-initiative.eu/fr/actions/95-niger-irregular-migration cf. Jegen, Leonie/Zanker, Franziska (2019): European dominance of migration policy in Niger. „On a fait les filles avant la mère“. MEDAM Policy Brief 3/2019, 6

[131] http://www.anp.ne/?q=article/le-gouvernement-adopte-des-projets-de-decret-sur-la-migration-et-la-sante

[132] Report of the Preparatory Meeting of the Migration Policy Dialogue Framework. Niamey, 31.05.2019.

[133] http://www.anp.ne/?q=article/adoption-d-un-document-de-politique-nationale-des-frontieres-2019-2035-et-de-son-plan-d

[134] Jegen, Leonie/Zanker, Franziska (2019): European dominance of migration policy in Niger. „On a fait les filles avant la mère“ . MEDAM Policy Brief 3/2019, 6.

[135] https://www.snrd-africa.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/Wirkungsfactsheet-Niger_Herr-Preuss.pdf

[136] Acuerdo marco de cooperación en materia de inmigración entre el reino de España y la república de Níger. 03.07.2008.

[137] Global detention project (2019): Country report. Immigrant detention in Niger. Expanding the EU-financed zone of suffering through ‚penal humanitarianism‘. March 2019, 20.

[138] Hamadou, Abdoulaye (2018): La gestion des flux migratoires au Niger entre engagements et contraintes. In Revue des droits de l’homme (14), 11.

[139] UN Human Rights Council (2019): Visit to the Niger. 16.05.2019. A/HRC/41/38/Add.1., 4

[140] Eurostat (2019): Third-country nationals who have left the territory by type of return and citizenship.

[141] Kipp, David (2018): From exception to rule – the EU Trust fund for Africa. SWP Research Paper 13. December 2018, 20.

[142] Eurostat (2019): All valid permits by reason, length of validity and citizenship on 31 December of each year.

[143] http://www.rfi.fr/afrique/20151205-libye-enfants-mouammar-saadi-kadhafi

[144] http://www.rfi.fr/afrique/20190606-tchad-prison-vie-deux-responsables-groupe-rebelle-ccmsr-boumaye-yacoub

[145] https://www.irinnews.org/news/2018/05/10/niger-sends-sudanese-refugees-back-libya

[146] https://www.nabc.nl/services/trade-missions/365/european-parliament-trade-mission-to-niger

[147] https://www.eureporter.co/frontpage/2018/07/16/tajani-visit-to-niger-95-decrease-in-migration-flows-to-libya-and-europe-thanks-to-eu-partnership-and-funds/

[148] https://eeas.europa.eu/csdp-missions-operations/eucap-sahel-niger/42130/contracts-awarded_en

[149] https://sldinfo.com/2019/06/france-arms-its-reapers/

[150] https://www.agenceecofin.com/transports/0510-69842-niger-le-ministere-des-transport-epingle-pour-des-irregularites-dans-l-attribution-du-marche-du-permis-biometrique

[151] https://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/050319/au-mali-niger-et-senegal-le-marche-de-l-identite-en-plein-essor?onglet=full

[152] Interview Direction de l’état civil, Niamey, 23.07.2019.

[153] https://www.jeuneafrique.com/739970/politique/niger-gemalto-realisera-le-premier-fichier-electoral-biometrique-du-pays/

[154] https://nigerdiaspora.net/index.php/societe-archives/item/66480-passeport-biometrique-au-niger-confiance-a-contec-global-niger-sarl

[155] https://www.jeuneafrique.com/mag/384823/societe/niger-vieux-comptes-ne-bons-amis/

[156] http://www.anp.ne/?q=article/affaire-africard-le-niger-paie-5-4-milliards-de-fcfa-d-indemnite-et-la-societe-leve-la

[157] https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/news-feature/2019/06/06/biometrics-new-frontier-eu-migration-policy-niger

[158] Cadre de Concertation sur la Migration. Niamey, June 12, 2019.

[159] http://www.ceniniger.org/audiences-foraines-a-ouro-gomni/

[160] Kipp, David (2018): From exception to rule – the EU Trust fund for Africa. SWP Research Paper 13. December 2018, 20.

[161] Kipp, David (2018): From exception to rule – the EU Trust fund for Africa. SWP Research Paper 13. December 2018, 15.

[162] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/partner/civipol_en

[163] https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/partner/fundacion-internacional-y-para-iberoamerica-de-administracion-y-politicas-publicas

[164] cf. Lambert, Laura (2019): Asyl im Niger – politische Rolle und lokale Adaptionen des Flüchtlingsschutzes. in Konfliktfeld Fluchtmigration. Historische und ethnographische Perspektiven, ed. by Johler, Reingard/Lange, Jan (ed.):. Bielefeld: Transcript, 191-205.

[165] Tinti, Peter; Reitano, Tuesday (2017): Migrant, Refugee, Smuggler, Saviour. London: Hurst & Company.

[166] https://www.dw.com/de/proteste-und-verhaftungen-in-niger/a-43288484

[167] Direction de la Surveillance du Territoire.

[168] Direction de la Surveillance du Territoire.

[169] Direction de la Surveillance du Territoire.

[170] Dan Dah, Laouali Mahaman (2018): Migration Niger 2017. Version préliminaire. July 2018, 53.

[171] https://data2.unhcr.org/en/country/ner

[172] UN Data (2016): Refugees from Niger by country of origin. 2016. data.un.org

[173] https://data2.unhcr.org/en/country/ner

[174] Eurostat (2019): Asylum and first time asylum applicants by citizenship, age and sex Annual aggregated data (rounded).

[175] Eurostat (2019): Final decisions on applications by citizenship, age and sex. Annual data (rounded).

[176] Eurostat (2019): Third-country nationals who have left the territory by type of return and citizenship.

[177] http://www.nigermigrationresponse.org/en/Our-work/assisted-voluntary-return

[178] https://migrationjointinitiative.org/fr

[179] Eurostat (2019): Third-country nationals who have left the territory by type of return and citizenship.

[180] Global detention project (2019): Country report. Immigrant detention in Niger. Expanding the EU-financed zone of suffering through ‚penal humanitarianism‘. March 2019.

image_pdfimage_print
Scroll to top