Here are a couple of snippets of current news from that country.
There’s a continuing and unrelenting surge of migrants seeking access to Europe. One of the potential conduits is through the two Spanish enclaves of Melilla and Ceuta in North Africa. Both enclaves have a border with Morocco. Although Morocco gained its independence in 1956, Spain claims a historical right to these two enclaves. Oddly, Spain does not recognise any such historical British right to control Gibraltar.
Just over a week ago, migrants made seven attempts to rush the fence in the span of four days. After two months of relative calm, about 1,500 migrants tried to cross the border into Melilla; some eighty managed to make it past the six-metre (20ft) razor-wire border fence, but were later apprehended.
Moroccan authorities have raided makeshift camps, mostly while the ‘residents’ are sleeping. Everything was flattened or destroyed – plastic tents, food and spare clothing. Hundreds of migrants were put on buses to Fez and Rabat. Apparently, they are then abandoned in the street and end up begging for money to return to the border.
In another report, human rights individuals claim the Spanish police have beaten migrants and illegally forced them back into Morocco when they tried to climb over the border into Melilla. They’re called ‘illegal pushbacks’ and ‘illegal expulsions’ of ‘migrants’.
Migrants usually possess documentation, to prove identity, for example. Some potential immigrants go so far as to erase fingerprints or destroy ID documents. The pressure has been mounting for years in this area – people trying to reach Europe to escape war, oppression or hardship in the benighted continent; though latterly, there may be other less humanitarian reasons to infiltrate into Europe.
On the other side of the coin, Spanish government officials have praised the ‘exemplary and humanitarian conduct’ of the border guards and also admit there is ‘dramatic migratory pressure’ on Europe’s borders.
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