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What they suffer to get there.

You may be wondering why I post so much about African immigrants landing in Sicily and what they go through. It's because I spent six months in Palermo and talked to many of them and heard the harrowing stories, a young guy in a shipwreck who saw his brother go overboard and drown, a man who swam to Sicilian fisherman's net out in the wide ocean, the young women who arrive pregnant... You wonder WHY would they start their journey near the end of a pregnancy? They started their journey two years before as virgins and got raped in the Libyan jail by their jailers and then in the house where they were kept as slaves to grow and prepare food for other emigrants waiting in a smugglers' compound for the next departure of a broken-down fishing boat or overcrowded raft, waiting to be set adrift without a captain or gas or food or water. Or lifejackets. Every African face you see in Palermo has a story of suffering and loss behind it. Yes, my grandparents were immigrants, but they came on a safe, steel ship, and were able to come legally. These poor people from sub-Saharan Africa have to set foot on European soil before they can claim refugee status. Europe must hope they drown before they get there or they would change their laws. None of the Africans except South Africans can get a visa for Europe. European anti-immigration laws meant to keep them at bay are what force them to trust in traffickers, are what give the traffickers such power to be cruel, are what drown them, if they make it across alive across the desert.
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