France’s Macron Pledges Human Trafficking Crackdown

French President Emmanuel Macron spoke at the COP23 meeting in Bonn, Germany
French President Emmanuel Macron delivers a speech during the 23rd Conference of the Parties (COP) climate talks in Bonn, Germany, Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017. Photo: Martin Meissner, AP

French President Emmanuel Macron on Tuesday called for more support for African migrants trapped in Libya and condemned the trafficking of refugees trying to reach Europe.

During a speech to university students in Burkina Faso, Mr. Macron said he wanted “Africa and Europe to help populations trapped in Libya by providing massive support to the evacuation of endangered people.”

He said he would outline further plans to limit human trafficking when he meets European Union and African Union leaders at a summit in Ivory Coast on Wednesday.

Mr. Macron is attempting to set up centers in Chad and Nigeria to process asylum applications for Africans seeking refuge in France.

He has urged the U.N. Security Council to act against what he said were crimes against humanity in Libya, referring to footage broadcast on CNN that showed the bidding on migrant men from Africa.

As part of a deal between the E.U. and Libya in February, the Libyan coast guard is charged with stopping vessels carrying migrants and asylum-seekers to Europe.

CNN found that people were being sold into slavery for as little as $400, while others are held in detention centers in Libya. Humanitarian organizations have accused Libyan authorities and the E.U. of failing to help.

Migrants Continue to Suffer in Libya’s ‘Concentration Camps’