by Dish Staff
The summer months typically see large numbers of migrants crossing from Africa to Spain in search of asylum or illegal work. But according to the Spanish coast guard, this summer has been one of the worst on record because of calmer seas and lax policing by authorities in Morocco, which migrants use as their launching pad for Spain. Frontex, the European Union’s agency for external border security, told the Spanish daily El País on Wednesday that Moroccan authorities were probably turning a blind eye to the situation in order to alleviate their own migratory pressures, adding that Morocco’s police and coast guard had not been out on patrol since Monday.
Lauren Frayer calls it “the biggest mass migration push into Spain in decades”:
In addition to this week’s arrivals by sea, some 1,600 migrants have tried to scale fences that separate Morocco from Spain’s North African enclaves. Many of them couldn’t get across, since Spain recently fortified the fences with anti-climbing mesh. But on Wednesday, about 80 men managed to climb it, and got stuck atop a three-story-high fence, with border guards watching below, poised to grab them. After more than 10 hours in the August heat, they were helped down to safety — dehydrated and weak, but alive.