A boat filled with African migrants, all men, landed on a beach in Spain and quickly disappeared mingling with the holiday makers.
The Telegraph quoted witness Carlos Sanz saying that the group of “undocumented” migrants vanished before police could arrive. According to a report from El Confidencial, they ran towards a small pine forest near the Faro de Camarinal lighthouse.
Footage on social media shows a dinghy landing on the popular tourist beach in southern Spain on Wednesday, August 9. Holiday makers watch in shock as the black migrants scramble to reach the shore.
According to data cited by Hungarian security chief György Bakondi some almost 10 000 migrants have entered Spain in the first six months of 2017 — a significant increase on the previous figures.
On the beach near the village a Daily Mail reporter discovered three more discarded boats within a few hundred yards which are believed to have used by migrants.
Jose Maraver, head of the Maritime Rescue centre, told the Telegraph that a second boat had landed on another beach in the area on Thursday while two vessels had to be rescued. “Every day there are boats, every day there is migration,” Maraver said. “The situation is getting very complicated.”
The number of migrants reaching the province of Malaga in the first six months of 2017 had almost equalled the number for the whole of the previous year.
Spain has already received more arrivals this year than in the whole of 2016, the International Organization for Migration confirmed on Thursday, with almost 8 200 migrants noted by August 6, according to the IOM. “It’s possible that Spain will outperform Greece this year,” Joel Millman, an IOM spokesperson, told AFP. “If so, that’s a big change.”
A Civil Guard source told the Daily Mail: “In all around 40 migrants arrived,” on Wednsday but only “nine of those that made it to shore were located in the vicinity, hiding in the countryside behind the coast”. The authorities do not know what happened to the rest of the African clandestines.
Ceuta, a Spanish enclave in Morocco has meanwhile seen a 230 percent rise in arrivals in recent weeks. Some 700 black Africans tried to break through on Thursday but were pushed back by Moroccan police, officials said.
An earlier attempt by around 1 000 migrants, armed with sticks and home-made spears, was stopped by officers from both countries.
Since the European Union agreed to pay the Turkish government to stem the Eastern Mediterranean flow of some 885 000 migrants via Greece, Italy had experienced a marked increase. But the Italian authorities have decided to clamp down on the smugglers.
Spanish daily El Pais on Thursday warned that “Spain cannot be left alone as the guardian of the south of Europe,” because it was “obvious that the migratory pressure has transferred to the western Mediterranean”. The Spanish daily urged Brussels to intervene as soon as possible.
But Penny Lawrence, deputy chief executive of Oxfam GB, said that safe routes for African migrants to Europe must be provided. “Outsourcing the policing of our borders to Libya isn’t the solution,” she added.
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