Things that must stop: Racism and the inhumane deportation of sub-Saharan migrants in Algeria
The mistreatment of sub-Saharan and Syrian migrants by Algerian authorities and racism against blacks in Algeria are persistent issues that continue to raise serious concerns. Numerous reports have revealed that migrants and blacks in Algeria are victims of discrimination, intimidation, physical violence, theft, and other forms of mistreatment by the authorities.
Sub-Saharan and Syrian migrants face many challenges when they arrive in Algeria, particularly in terms of access to legal and humanitarian protection. The detention centers where migrants are held are often overcrowded, unsanitary, and critically lacking in sanitation facilities. Migrants are regularly subjected to inhumane conditions without access to adequate legal or humanitarian assistance. In 2019, Human Rights Watch reported that Algerian authorities had expelled more than 25,000 migrants to Niger and Mali, most of them forcibly and without examining their individual situation.
Racism against blacks in Algeria is also a concern. Blacks are often victims of discrimination, stigmatization, and acts of violence because of their skin color. They face obstacles to finding employment and housing, and are often treated with disdain and condescension by Algerians. In 2020, an investigation by Amnesty International revealed that black migrants and refugees in Algeria faced widespread violence, including arbitrary arrests, physical violence, and forced evictions.
In March 2020, the International Organization for Migration published a report documenting the deaths of 183 migrants in the Algerian desert between January and April 2020. The migrants, many of whom were Sub-Saharan, were expelled by Algerian authorities to the border with Niger without water or food, or any assistance.
These examples clearly demonstrate the challenges faced by migrants and ethnic minorities in Algeria. Algerian authorities must take immediate steps to end the mistreatment of migrants, protect ethnic minorities, and establish a clear legal framework to ensure the protection of human rights. Algerian society must also take action to combat racism and discrimination. Dialogue, education, and awareness-raising are essential to promoting a more inclusive society that respects ethnic diversity.