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Rabat – Close to 150 sub-Saharan migrants attempted to jump the double barrier separating the Spanish enclave of Melilla and Morocco on Monday morning with 59 of them successful. In the midst of the occurrence, three Spanish civil guards and two of the immigrants were injured.
As a spokesperson for the Spanish government reported to Europa Press, at around 5:15 a.m. this morning, Spanish Civil Guard troops noticed the presence of a large group of migrants near the fence, in the region of the Nano river.
Security forces from Morocco and Spain jointly followed the anti-intrusion protocol, the statement from the Spanish government detailed the “active collaboration” of Moroccan forces alongside the Spanish territorial patrols known as the rural service groups (GRS) in addition to helicopter intervention.
The Spanish government spokesperson admitted that “despite the security devices in place, around 6 a.m. there was a surge of more than 150 people, with 59 migrants entering Melilla.
“In addition, three agents of the Spanish Civil Guard on duty and two migrants were injured, “with a mild prognosis,” detailed the aforementioned source.
In early February of this year, the issue of migration between both Morocco and Spain became a trending topic after a group of Moroccan migrants were stranded in the Canary Islands, a Spanish archipelago, and protested plans of deportation back to Morocco.
Morocco is known for playing a key role in gatekeeping Europe’s borders against irregular migration, as the closest African point to the European continent. For years, its efforts have remained strongly recognized, and it remains an important security ally to Europe.
After the US recognition of Morocco’s territorial integrity, Spanish figures raised eyebrows with a multitude of individual unilateral responses, that ranged from support to condemnation of the Moroccan momentum over the Western Sahara issue.
But these conflicting statements were swiftly countered by the assurance of Spain’s plans to reinforce its relationship with Morocco, not only on the security and migration issue but also on the diplomatic and economic spheres.