Home Politics What we know about Operation Wuambushu against immigrants in Mayotte

What we know about Operation Wuambushu against immigrants in Mayotte

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Concern is growing in Mayotte. The Indian Ocean archipelago is set to be the scene of Operation Wuambushu prepared by the Ministry of Home Affairs and Foreign Affairs. Orchestrated by Gerald Darmanin, this military and police operation aims to expel foreigners in an irregular situation who live in the slums of Mayotte. It was approved in February by Emmanuel Macron and should be launched at the end of the week, after the end of Ramadan.

  • What is the “Wuambushu” process?

“Wuambushu”, which means “recovery” in Mahoran, is intended to deport foreigners in an irregular situation, who live in the slums of Mayotte, to the lunar island of Anjouan, located 70 kilometers away as the crow flies.

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“Le Canard enchaîné”, in its issue of February 22, asserts that ” Half a thousand gendarmes and police are preparing to invade the archipelago. […] their mission? Put an end to illegal immigration and crush violators with machetes ».

This process should begin at the end of the week, Thursday, Friday, or even Saturday, but no exact date has been set yet. However, “Wuambushu” can last two months. The Ministry of Interior aims to deport 300 people per day, compared to 70 currently. Thus, Mayotte prepared for the arrival of an additional 500 gendarmes and police.

  • How does the state justify this process?

According to HuffPost, many African immigrants especially Comoros try to illegally join Mayotte, where half the population is foreigners. These crossings, made on small motorized fishing boats used by smugglers called kwasa kwasa, often take a dramatic turn with frequent wrecks.

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In its quarterly report, the Prefecture of Mayotte reports that 2,255 foreigners in an irregular situation have been arrested at sea between 1any January and March 31, 2023, and 6,507 people have been deported.

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  • What are the consequences for the island?

Health workers based in Mayotte expressed themselves in Mayotte Hebdo, through a forum drawing the attention of François Brown, Minister of Health, about Operation Wuambushu stressing that “ Serious consequences It can follow.

According to caregivers, an intervention of this magnitude could, as indeed has happened in the past, lead to epidemiological high-risk cases in emergency accommodation areas, shortages of drinking water, limitation of access to care with many delays in care or Even insulation. Sick children.

Journalist Cyril CastellettiAnd Immediately a reporter, in particular in Le Monde and Mediapart, published photographs showing that the inhabitants of the slums had ” They took the initiative by destroying their own huts.”

However, according to La 1re, a regional TV channel, five Mayotte collectives (two Mayotte citizens’ groups, the Ré-MaA collective, women leaders, and the Mayotte Interests Defense Committee) have signed a joint letter to the government to ensure the maintenance of the ‘Wuambushu “.

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Mayotte, the island of deserted youth

Mayotte’s 1st district deputy, Estelle Yousofa, expressed her support for the operation, via La 1re news channel. Like an LR deputy of 2H constituency, Mansour Qamaruddin, who said on April 11 that residents are also in his favor due to the high level of crime on the island.

  • The process was criticized by various associations

However, the operation is also controversial in France, and some associations are concerned about the human consequences it could cause.

Human Rights League (ld) What’s called “The authorities must put an end to this escalation of violence and demand that those responsible immediately respect the rule of law. “.

UNICEF, as well The National Human Rights Committee They reacted concerned about respecting rights in the course of this process.

sequel after announcement

  • What do you think Comoros?

The Comoros government strongly opposes the process launched by France. The authorities fear an increased risk of violence and many local officials fear they will not be able to stop it.

In Mayotte, many families have nothing left to eat.

We do not have the means to absorb this violence that the French state is producing from Mayotte. Such a complex situation cannot be resolved in such a confusing way.”He expressed his regret to AFP, the governor of Anjouan, Anissi Shamsidine.

We strongly recommend that the French abandon Operation Wuambushu.For his part, criticized the spokesman for the Comorian government, Hamid Mesaidi. Comoros President Ghazali El Othmani told AFP last week he was hopeful The operation will be cancelled.thankful Not having the means to stop the process by force..

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