The Spanish prime minister said that the large increase in the number of migrants entering Ceuta illegally means a “serious crisis” for both Spain and Europe.
– We will restore order in the city and at our borders as soon as possible, said Sanchez, who will also visit the other ghetto of Melilla.
On Monday, nearly 6,000 migrants crossed the border between Morocco and Ceuta, a record high for a single day. Spanish Interior Minister Fernando Grande-Marlaska said on Tuesday that about half of them had been sent back to Morocco.
Many made their way to Spain’s Exclave by swimming or wading into low tide from Moroccan beaches a few kilometers away. Some have used inflatable shower rings or inflatable boats. At least one man drowned.
“Do not be afraid”
Others have climbed the border fence between Morocco and Spain.
– I saw on Facebook that it is possible to cross the border, so I took a taxi here with my friends because I could no longer get food for my family, says the 26-year-old divorced and unemployed mother of two, Warda, to Agence France-Presse.
– I’m not afraid. Either I’m dead or I’m done.
On Tuesday, 200 other Spanish policemen were deployed at the scene, and Moroccan guards used tear gas to prevent people from crossing the border in the city of Fnideq.
The Spanish regions of Ceuta and Melilla form the EU’s only land border with Africa. This means that many people are trying to get there in hopes of a better future in Europe.
EU Internal Commissioner Elva Johansson describes the increasing number of migrants crossing the border illegally as a matter of concern, and urges Morocco to continue taking preventive measures.
You say in the European Parliament that the Spanish border is a European border.
Spanish Foreign Minister Arancha Gonzalez Laia said that Spain called on Tuesday the Moroccan ambassador to remind you that border control is a “shared responsibility”.
The situation has been tense between Morocco and Spain since it emerged that Polisario leader Brahim Ghali was receiving care for COVID-19 in a Spanish hospital. The Polisario Front is fighting for Western Sahara’s independence from Morocco and the government has been tense in Rabat. During the hospital stay. But the Spanish foreign minister defends the decision to sponsor Ghali, describing it as a humanitarian issue.
Analysts have warned that diplomatic tensions could harm cooperation in the area of illegal immigration. Some say Morocco has relaxed border controls as a way to pressure Madrid.
“This is only happening because of the negativity of the Moroccan authorities,” Juan Jose Vivas, the regional leader of Ceuta, told Spanish television.
However, Moroccan government officials claim that the large influx of migrants has nothing to do with the dispute over the leader of the Polisario Front.
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