The Spanish maritime police rescued on Friday nine irregular Moroccan migrants off the Mediterranean.
Rabat- The undocumented migrants sailed from Morocco’s Rif capital of Nador and were 11 miles from the coast of the Spanish enclave, Melilla. Their boat broke down as they were heading toward the southern shores of Spain.
The Spanish navy rescued all the migrants on time.
A Spanish rescue boat transferred the migrants to Melilla where they received the necessary health checks by a red cross team.
The rescued migrants including a young woman, were all Moroccan nationals.
The migrants are reportedly in good shape.
Morocco and Spain are dealing with endless attempts by undocumented migrants to reach Spain from the North African country.
The Moroccan government’s resolve to stem the flow of irregular migration by land and sea to Europe have not deterred many migrants, however.
In their determination to leave the country, a number of Moroccan migrants continue to travel by boat in the Mediterranean, sometimes at the risk of their lives.
Moroccans account for 13 percent of the undocumented migrants who attempted to reach Europe in the first nine months of 2018. In the same period, 7,100 Moroccans attempted to cross to Spain, according to official Spanish sources.
In October, a statement by Moroccan authorities indicated that irregular migration attempts had surged by 150 percent along the western Mediterranean route from the levels recorded between 2003 and 2015.
The Spanish Ministry of Interior estimated that more than 250,000 undocumented Moroccans are currently living in Spain, with nearly 5,000 identified as “unaccompanied minors.”
A joint report by Moroccan marketing agency Sunergia and Moroccan news outlet L’economiste established that an overwhelming number of Moroccans want to leave their country.
Interviewing 1,000 Moroccans, the study found that some 59 percent of Moroccan youth aged 15-24 said they would not hesitate to migrate irregularly.