Immigration a danger for Spain: Morrocan king
17 January 2005, RABAT-King Mohamed VI of Morocco said illegal immigration was a danger for both Spain and Morocco.
17 January 2005
RABAT-King Mohamed VI of Morocco said illegal immigration was a danger for both Spain and Morocco.
His comments came as King Juan Carlos arrived in Rabat for a state visit.
The Spanish king was expected to conduct talks with his Moroccan counterpart who told the Spanish daily El Pais illegal immigration represented "a danger for Spain"
as well as Morocco.
In a rare interview, King Mohamed VI said: “We are aware of the fact that this immigration represents a danger for Spain.
“The same goes for Morocco as half of the sub-Saharan candidates to illegal immigration end up staying in Morocco."
The Moroccan monarch stressed that he had always wanted to tackle this problem but said "the approach has evolved in the past months," referring to warming ties between Madrid and Rabat since the Spanish socialists swept into power last March.
Arrests of would-be immigrants from sub-Saharan Africa on Spain's Andalusia coast and Canary Islands dropped 18 percent last year largely due to tighter vigilance by Moroccan authorities.
The Moroccan king vowed to take even stronger action to deter immigration across the strait of Gibraltar.
"Now migration pressure has increased toward the south, through the Canary Islands," which Moroccan and sub-Saharan would-be immigrants try to reach aboard makeshift boats, he added.
"We have always asked Spain and the whole of the European Union, to provide
us with the necessary means to combat this scourge," he noted.
He expressed reservations about a proposal by European countries, particularly Italy, to set up EU-financed holding centres in North African countries for the migrants.
"I don't think they will contribute to resolving this problem," he said.
[Copyright EFE with Expatica]
Subject: Spanish news