Algeria must immediately stop collective expulsions of African migrants across its border with Niger, a UN report said, after rights groups accused Algiers of rounding up and expelling thousands of people to the desert.
Algeria has sent around 35 600 Nigeriens back to Niger since 2014, according to International Organisation for Migration (IOM) figures cited in the report, including more than 12 000 since the start of the year.
"These collective expulsions from Algeria to Niger are in utter violation of international law," Felipe Gonzalez Morales, UN special rapporteur on human rights for migrants, said in the report, a copy of which was provided to AFP on Tuesday.
"I call on the government of Algeria to abide by its international obligation and halt with immediate effect all collective expulsions of migrants to Niger."
The North African state has denied abandoning migrants in desolate border areas but said it faces an influx of sub-Saharan Africans crossing over from Mali and Niger.