1,100 migrants attempt to storm through Moroccan border fence

Rabat, Jan 2 (IANS) About 1,100 African migrants attempted to storm a border fence from Morocco to reach Spain’s Ceuta enclave, an incident in which 55 border guards were injured, the media reported on Monday.

Described as “extremely violent and organised” by Ceuta government, the incident took place on new year’s day, the BBC reported.

The attempt, which was foiled by the Moroccan police, led to the arrest of all the illegal immigrants, Xinhua news agency quoted the Interior Ministry as saying in a statement.

It said those who make such attempts will be brought to justice, which will deliver verdicts ranging from expulsion from Moroccan territory to more severe sentences depending on how serious their acts are.

Tens of thousands of sub-Saharan African migrants living illegally in Morocco try to enter Ceuta and Melilla each year, hoping to get a better life in Europe.

Both cities have six-metre-high border wire fences separating them from Morocco.

Over the past few years, Morocco has adopted a strict policy against illegal migrants to Europe, but opened a door for regularising their status.

In December, Morocco launched the second phase of the regularisation of the situation of illegal immigrants in the country, after the first phase led to granting about 25,000 people legal status.

–IANS

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