Irregular Migration: Spain Continues Efforts to Defend Morocco’s Interests at EU

Nasser Bourita and Josepp Borell
Morocco’s Foreign Affairs Nasser Bourita and his Spanish counterpart Josepp Borell

The Spanish government has called on the European Union to provide Morocco with multi-year financial aid to enable the North African country to deal with pressure due to the flow of undocumented migrants.

Spanish news outlet El Pais said that three Spanish officials emphasized the importance of the increase of financial support to Morocco.

The officials conveyed their support during the EU’s Deputy Director General of Migration and Internal Affairs, Simon Mordue’s visit in May.

The list of Spanish officials who demanded an annual financial contribution to Morocco from the EU included General Director of International Relations and Immigration of the Ministry of the Interior, Elena Garzón and Head of the General Commissariat of Foreigners and Borders, Juan Enrique Taborda.

“Both asked that Brussels guarantee a multi-year fund to Morocco,” the news outlet added.

The Spanish authorities also called on the EU to submit aid promised to Morocco “seven months ago,” referring to the 140 million euros. According to El Pias the allocation was not “transferred in full.”

Spain and Morocco have been facing considerable pressure on both sides due to the flow of irregular migrants. The pressure urged Spain to repeatedly call on the European Union to help the North African country in the Mediterranean. The issue also reinforced cooperation between Morocco and Spain.

The Moroccan government announced that security services have thwarted more than 30,000 irregular migration attempts in 2019, compared to 88,761 of prevented attempts in 2018.

Spokesperson of the Government Mustapha El Khalfi said on Thursday that the decrease in the number of irregular migration attempts reflects the “great” effort of Morocco’s law enforcement forces against the issue of undocumented migration and the trafficking networks active in this area.