Asians wait in Guinea to sail to Spain

20th September 2007, Comments 0 comments

20 September 2007 , MADRID - Up to 6,000 Asians have massed in Guinea-Conakry hoping to take a high risk sea trip to Spain, the ABC daily newspaper reported on Thursday citing a Spanish intelligence report.

20 September 2007

MADRID - Up to 6,000 Asians have massed in Guinea-Conakry hoping to take a high risk sea trip to Spain, the ABC daily newspaper reported on Thursday citing a Spanish intelligence report.

Most of the would-be migrants come from India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Myanmar and spent years working in Gulf states before being taken to the West African country by human trafficking networks, the newspaper said.

The migrants usually stopped off in Casablanca in Morocco before heading south to Guinea-Conakry, often using Ethiopian Airlines in their travels, it added.

The deputy director of European Union external border agency Frontex, Gil Arias, was quoted as saying that he was "certain" that the Asians gathered in Guinea-Conakry would "sooner or later" try to reach Europe.

In February some 370 people from Pakistan, India and Bangladesh, were rescued from a ship, the Marine I, stranded off Mauritania, which was on its way to Spain's Canary Islands.

In March some 300 people from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh were found on a cargo ship called "Happy Day" off the coast of Senegal that was also believed to be headed for Spain.

The Canary Islands have been struggling with a huge influx of African migrants, who for the most part make the dangerous journey on small wooden fishing boats.

More than 31,200 immigrants arrived in the islands last year, more than tripling the previous annual record and overwhelming the island chain authorities, and some 7,000 have made port this year.

The arrival of migrants has declined this year due in part to stepped up patrols of the West African coast, forcing immigrants to look elsewhere.

(Copyright AFP with Expatica)

Subject: Spanish news

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