Saturday, July 12, 2008

Illegal migration from Africa to EU on the rise

Leaders from Europe, Africa and the Middle East will meet in Paris this weekend to launch the Mediterranean Union.

The new body aims to strengthen ties between Europe and its southern neighbours.

Many of those migrating to North Africa and Europe come from West and Central Africa.

Their pursuit of a better life takes them on a dangerous journey north across the Sahara Desert and the Mediterranean Sea.

They leave their home countries and travel to transit countries such as Mauritania, Mali and Niger.

There, they begin their journey across desert borders to North Africa and then on to Europe.

Al Jazeera's Casey Kauffman traveled to the northeast of Mali and met up with a group of migrants on the first leg of their journey across the Sahara.