Invading migrants are increasingly turning their attentions Spain.
Spain is on track to overtake Greece as the second-biggest gateway for migrants entering Europe by sea. The sudden surge in migration to Spain comes amid a crackdown on human smuggling along the Libya-Italy sea route, currently the main migrant point of entry to Europe.
The westward shift in migration routes from Greece and Italy implies that Spain, situated only ten miles from Africa by sea, may soon find itself at the center of Europe’s migration crisis.
More than 8,300 illegal migrants have reached Spanish shores during the first seven months of 2017 — three times as many as in all of 2016, according to the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
Thousands more migrants have entered Spain by land, primarily at the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla on the north coast of Morocco, the European Union’s only land borders with Africa. Once there, migrants are housed in temporary shelters and then moved to the Spanish mainland, from where many continue on to other parts of Europe.
In all, some 12,000 migrants have arrived in Spain so far this year, compared to 13,246 for all of 2016. By comparison, 14,156 migrants have arrived in Greece so far in 2017.
Italy remains the main migrant gateway to Europe, with around 97,000 arrivals so far this year, compared to 181,436 for all of 2016. Italy has been the main point of entry to Europe since the EU-Turkey migrant deal, signed in March 2016, shut off the route from Turkey to Greece, at one time the preferred point of entry to Europe for migrants from Asia and the Middle East. Almost 600,000 migrants have arrived in Italy during the past four years. Gatestoneinstutue
EU’s border force Frontex reveals how Spanish and Moroccan police have fortified the two cities, which have a combined population of 180,000, with razor wire fencing and moats in a bid to keep migrants out.
Once inside people are technically on EU soil and are entitled to demand transport to the Spanish mainland, from where they can travel through France and onto Calais and Britain.
In 2014 more than 18,000 “irregular sub-Saharan migrants” attempted to breach the cities’ defences according to Frontex, which says the arrival of refugees from the Middle East has further added to the chaos.
Many Syrians are now buying fake Moroccan passports which allow them to travel into Ceuta and Melilla posing as traders legally, at which point they immediately claim asylum. Express UK