ROME

Malta on Friday thanked Turkey and Libya for their cooperation against irregular migration and human trafficking.

“I want to thank the government of [Fayez al-] Serraj in Libya who, despite all the war worries they have and the Covid-19 pandemic, and with very limited means, have managed to stop human traffickers from sending 2,000 immigrants to our country,” Foreign Minister Evarist Bartolo said on Facebook.

“We would also like to thank the Turkish government for helping to open a new page with the Serraj government in Tripoli.”

Bartolo noted that in the recent weeks, the Libyan government had also taken serious action against human traffickers who made millions of euros every year from immigrants they send towards Malta and Italy through the Central Mediterranean Sea.

Bartolo said they needed to continue helping Libya and protecting the North African country’s land and coastal borders, as well as fight against human trafficking and establish more decent centers for migrants.

There should be more cooperation between the EU and African countries to offer a better future for people who risk their lives by trying to cross the Sahara Desert and Mediterranean Sea to reach Europe, he said.

* Writing by Busra Nur Bilgic Cakmak in Ankara

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