Dealing with the menace of illegal African immigration
With more and more African migrants pounding at Europe's door in recent months -- and up to 40 percent dying on the way -- top officials from across both continents huddled Monday for landmark talks on how to deter them.
Tackling the chronic poverty and violence that fuel illegal immigration to Europe is one of the key challenges facing the foreign ministers and representatives of 58 countries meeting in the Moroccan capital, Rabat.
The group hopes to agree on joint patrols in the Mediterranean or off the West African coast and on expanding language training and education of potential legal immigrants, among dozens of other measures.
More than 10,000 people have arrived in the Canary Islands since the beginning of 2006 -- already more than twice as many as arrived in 2005, according to Jean-Philippe Chauzy, spokesman for the International Organization for Migration.
And the migrants have been undaunted by tightened border controls and the treacherous seas that kill an estimated 40 percent of them, according to European Union officials.
The influx fuels widespread concern in a Europe already struggling with unemployment and racial tensions.
Europe, Africans search for ways to stem migration
Nations focus on illegal migrants