This is a Chapter of the Study “How does the media on both sides of the Mediterranean report on migration?” carried out and prepared by the Ethical Journalism Network and commissioned in the framework of EUROMED Migration IV – a project, financed by the European Union and implemented by ICMPD. © European Union, 2017.
Public Debate Needed to Confront Denial and Media Stereotypes
Algeria has always been a host country for migrant communities, and even more so since its independence. The Sahrawi people and the Palestinians, for instance, were very quickly integrated into the Algerian social fabric and a very deep relationship has been forged over the decades with both communities, a policy well accepted and supported within Algerian society.
And yet more recent migration and, in particular, that from sub-Saharan Africa has not seen the same sort of untroubled integration.
Indeed, migration questions have developed and been embraced quite differently. In the space of a few years, Algeria has gone from being a place of transit to a settlement country for many thousands of sub-Saharan migrants and refugees, as well as for people on the move from Syria, Libya and Yemen.
Yet talk and consideration of migration and refugee issues in Algerian media, whether it is in the press, on radio and television or on digital platforms, appear to be discouraged. Migration-related themes are often relegated to the “other news” section on the news agenda and reporting on migration tends to focus on its association with matters of security, violence and the rising migrant death toll in the Mediterranean Sea and the Algerian Sahara.