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Weary of Poverty, Senegalese Migrants Head for Europe

Migrants wait to disembark from the Italian Navy vessel 'Chimera' in the harbor of Salerno, Italy, Wednesday, April 22, 2015. Italy pressed the European Union on Wednesday to devise concrete, robust steps to stop the deadly tide of migrants on smugglers' boats in the Mediterranean, including setting up refugee camps in countries bordering Libya. Italian Defense Minister Roberta Pinotti also said human traffickers must be targeted with military intervention. (AP Photo/Francesco Pecoraro)
Migrants wait to disembark from the Italian Navy vessel ‘Chimera’ in the harbor of Salerno, Italy, Wednesday, April 22, 2015.  (AP Photo/Francesco Pecoraro)

Daniel Flynn, REUTERS

 

THIAROYE-SUR-MER, Senegal (Reuters) — After being repatriated to Senegal on a Spanish military plane having risked his life on a perilous sea crossing to the Canary Islands in 2006, Moustafa Diouf founded an association to warn young Africans of the dangers of illegal migration to Europe.

Last week, the secretary-general of his group gave up and took a bus to Morocco from where traffickers smuggled him to Spain aboard a fishing vessel. He was fed up at working without pay because donors did not provide the support they hoped for.

Now, Diouf, undeterred by the latest drownings of up to 900 migrants who were trying to reach Europe, is so desperate he is ready to do the same.

“I’m not afraid to die. I’m ready to leave. I cannot just stay here with my arms crossed,” he said, on the beach at Thiaroye-sur-Mer, a ramshackle village outside Senegal’s capital Dakar, where brightly painted fishing boats line the shore.

 

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