Rabat – The Melilla social welfare minister has announced that 86 unaccompanied minors crossed the Moroccan border to the Spanish enclave of Melilla.
According to Europa Press, Melilla’s Minister of Social Welfare Daniel Ventura said on Wednesday that the number of minor migrants who managed bypass border controls and enter Melilla through the land border was 20.
Another 15 minors entered with Moroccan identification. The group includes children who arrived with a relative or another individual.
Ventura also reported that five minors were smuggled in inside vehicles and trucks. Four others reached Melilla by swimming over from the Moroccan side, added Europa Press.
Every day, migrants take risks to try to break into the Eldorado.
Earlier this week, Spanish authorities caught two Moroccan migrants hiding inside the engine compartment of a tourist bus shortly after it had disembarked the ferry from Morocco. A video of their discovery went viral on the internet.
Another video which made news headlines showed a Moroccan trying to get to Spain by hand-paddling his way across the Mediterranean Sea on a tube.
Both Spain and Morocco pledge determination to reinforce border security cooperation.
Europa Press reported yesterday that two Spanish senior officials in charge of migration and security will visit Morocco Friday to reinforce “collaboration on migration.”
The two Spanish secretaries of state, Ana Botella and Consuelo Rumi, will hold a meeting with Morocco’s migration and border surveillance manager, Khalid Zerouali.
The meeting will take place in Essaouira, a coastal city north of Agadir, convening delegations from Spanish and Moroccan ministries of foreign affairs.
Quoting the International Organization for Migration, the local news outlet reported that over 3,100 migrants have entered the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla by land since the start of 2018.
The news outlet added that 25,000 others have landed in Spain by sea.
Over 100 sub-Saharan migrants forced their way into Ceuta on August 22. The forced entry came after more than 600 migrants stormed Ceuta on July 26, the biggest successful storming since February 2017.
Last Thursday, Morocco’s government spokesperson, Mustapha El Khalfi, reiterated that the North African country stands firm against human trafficking networks.
“Morocco has taken another step of transferring migrants to other cities, and this is not a deportation operation outside the national territory.” He also estimated the number of foiled undocumented migration attempts at 65,000 in 2017.