ALGIERS, Nov. 13 (Xinhua) -- Algeria on Tuesday said its border guards thwarted every year 40,000 potential illegal immigrants from reaching Europe, as part of the North African nation's efforts in countering illegal immigration.
Director in charge of the migration issue at the Interior Ministry, Hassan Kacimi, was quoted by the Algerian radio Channel I as saying that "the majority of people who try to enter illegally Algeria from the southern border are from 23 African countries located in West, Sahel and Central African regions."
He noted that the main goal of most of these illegal immigrants is to reach the European coasts, noting that Algeria is sparing no effort to thwart them.
In this regard, he specified that this year, Algeria has handed over to Niger about 10,000 illegal immigrants.
He pointed out that a large number of migrants deported previously returned to Algeria more than once as they had been brought to justice for trial.
The official stressed that "the Algerian government has set the challenge of combating illegal immigration as a priority," adding that "some 5 million U.S. dollars have been earmarked in 2018 to fight this scourge."