By Fatou Sillah
Dr. Mamadou Tangara, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Cooperation, and Gambians Abroad, said in a press conference that the Government of the Gambia will not facilitate the deportation of any Gambian from the European Union without the proper procedures being followed.
“The government has not and will not arrange or facilitate the return of anyone without due process being followed. We have no interest in facilitating the return of our nationals from Europe considering the support given to their families through remittances; however, in ensuring a comprehensive and mutually beneficial partnership on migration with the European Union and member states, the Gambia has been engaging the European Union, and this engagement will continue in a bid to consider the plight of our nationals that are currently within the EU jurisdiction and have been law-abiding to be considered for integration. The Cabinet has met over the matter, and the government will soon negotiate bilaterally with the Federal Republic of Germany to explore the new law on residence permits that came into effect on January 1, 2023,” he said.
The minister further stated that the Gambia had been sanctioned by the EU due to the country’s lack of cooperation on readmission.
“Gambia is currently under sanctions for non-cooperation. With all that you are hearing, other countries are cooperating, and their people have been deported. As far as we are concerned, we think we are cooperating, but the EU thinks we are not. That’s why we are being sanctioned, and people must understand that. Other countries are accepting more deportees than The Gambia, but with all the noise here, the Europeans feel that we are not cooperating at all,” he said.