Immigration on agenda of Spanish-Morocco meet

7th August 2006, Comments 0 comments

7 August 2006, MADRID – Immigration was top of the agenda in talks between Spain’s vice prime minister and the prime minister of Morocco.

7 August 2006

MADRID – Immigration was top of the agenda in talks between Spain’s vice prime minister and the prime minister of Morocco.

Maria Teresa Fernando de la Vega arrived in Rabat on Monday to meet premier Driss Jettu. After a one-and-a-half hour meeting, the pair announced that Morocco had agreed to study proposals to accept immigrants back from Spain who belong to third countries.

De la Vega's visit follows a recent meeting between Spain’s King Juan Carlos I and Moroccan King Mohamed VI.

It is also designed to pave the way for discussions between Jettu and Spanish premier Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero in September.

Relationships between the two countries were described as good, with extensive trade between the pair being fostered and Spanish tourism to Morocco up by 25 percent.

Immigration is likely to be the most important topic for discussion between the two countries since Spain is witnessing the daily arrival of dozens of illegal immigrants from Africa by boat or by land.

On Monday, some 345 illegal immigrants, most Moroccans, were arrested in the Spanish part of Morocco, Ceuta, as they attempted to smuggle in to Spain inside lorries containing fairground rides for the summer fair.

A police operation had learnt of the plan and more arrests were said to be possible.

Those arrested so far are being taken to the border of Morocco to be handed over to the authorities there.

On Monday also around 350 more immigrants, whose origins were not known, arrived in boats on the Canary Isles of Tenerife and Gomera.

They are the latest in daily arrivals to the Spanish coasts. In recent weeks, fishermen and sunbathers have helped maritime rescue services and the Red Cross in saving struggling boats and giving immigrants medical attention when they reach shore.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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