5 March 2015
The EU's migration chief insisted yesterday (4 March) that the bloc must work with dictatorships in order to fight smugglers who traffic migrants to Europe, often using dangerous sea routes across the Mediterranean.
The comments by Dimitris Avramopoulos, the European Commissioner for Migration and Home Affairs, came as at least 10 more people were reported dead after a migrant boat capsized off Sicily.
"We're not naive. And the fact that we cooperate in the framework of the Khartoum and Rabat process (EU agreements with African countries) with the dictatorial regimes, we do not legalise them," Avramopoulos told a press conference in Brussels.
"We do not give them legitimacy, democratic and political legitimacy. But we have to cooperate in the field where we have decided to combat smuggling and trafficking."