Europe, Africa ministers meet on migration
European Union funding is being looked at as a potential tool for ending the dependence of some local economies in Africa on migrant trafficking.
Italy's foreign ministry hosted a meeting of interior ministers from Italy, Libya, Chad, Niger and Mali on Monday to discuss strategies for foiling the human traffickers who have sent hundreds of thousands of migrants toward Europe.
The migrants are often put on unseaworthy vessels and are brought to Italy when they are rescued at sea. But unlike refugees, economic migrants aren't eligible for asylum.
The ministers said in a statement that the United Nations refugee and migrant agencies need to help Niger and Chad set up migrant reception centers since those countries lie along trafficking routes.
They also say the agencies need to improve existing reception centers in Libya, where some migrants have reported being beaten, malnourished and tortured.