FIRST AIRED: September 12, 2016

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>> Thousands of migrants from west and central Africa take this route each week packed in trucks. Their goal is Libya, to the north, and then from Libya, Europe. I'm Ed McAllister, reporting for Reuters from the desert of central Niger. We've just witnessed dozens of trucks coming through here and we've spoken to many of the migrants.
They've shared some of the their hopes and dreams of the trip ahead. Some hoping to be car mechanics in south London, or work in factories in Germany or Paris. But the reality for many is that they have given over their lives, given over ownership of their existences to what is a vast and extremely lucrative network of smuggling across Africa, bringing people from across the region to Europe.
Some, at best, will find their way to a holding pen in Italy perhaps. Their case will be heard and they may be sent home, or worse, they could be found dead at sea or here in the merciless desert. The people who take this journey say they understand the risks.
They know of the problems of people dying at sea or in the desert. They say taking that risk is worth it, for leaving behind the hopelessness of their existence at home, the lack of money, the lack of jobs, the lack of food for their families they say. I spoke to one 20 year old Liberian man, his wife and child are back home, he hopes to go to Europe and come back and provide them with money.
He said he has little other option, he has to leave. He said, life is made of risks, some people are simply born with less chances than others, for some people this to them is the only option.