Spain: Illegal Muslim migration up 51 percent so far this year

As the news cycle focuses on Afghanistan and Covid, the Muslim migrant invasion of the EU has not let up.

Chaos in Spain as a result of this illegal migration will only worsen with time.

In May, 6,000 Muslim migrants stormed into the enclave of Ceuta in a single day.

The migrants are mostly Muslims: “According to UNHCR data, during the past year the most common nationalities in these arrivals were Algerian (39 percent of cases), Moroccan (20 percent) and Malian (13 percent).”

“The irregular arrival of immigrants grows 51% so far this year,” translated from “La llegada irregular de inmigrantes crece un 51% en lo que va de año,” by Carlota Perez, ABC España, October 11, 2021:

Lower restrictions against the coronavirus and the consequent reduction in members of the security forces at the borders, which last year served as a containment dam for irregular immigration, all this coupled with the worsening economic situation in the countries of the north of Africa, such as Morocco and Algeria, have made the arrival of illegal immigrants skyrocket in 2021. In numbers, a total of 28,729 people arrived irregularly in Spain between January 1 and September 30, according to the latest information published by the Ministry of the Interior. This figure represents an increase of up to 51 percent more than in the same period of the previous year.

The raw data provided by Interior shows a clear trend of increasing illegal arrivals to the Spanish coasts month by month. While in January of this year a little more than 3,000 people arrived, in September the figure increased to 8,451.

An examination of the official data highlights the fact that 27,136 people, that is, almost 95 percent of arrivals, have done so by sea. This figure is 65 percent more than last year, when just over 17,500 people arrived, according to official data.

There are three main routes that immigrants travel to reach Spanish territory. The busiest is the so-called Atlantic route, arriving in the Canary Islands. This is where there has been a significant increase in the reception of immigrants. If in 2020, around these same dates, 228 boats arrived carrying 6,124 people, this year the figure has increased by 114 percent, with 13,118 people who entered Spain using 340 boats. Last month alone, more than 4,000 arrivals were counted. It is a significant trend, since it is in these months of September, October and November when the migratory flow to the islands increases significantly, motivated by a calmer sea than during the rest of the year.

In 2020, the intensity of arrivals to the Canary Islands was due to several factors. The first, the bolt that Morocco imposed due to Covid-19, which caused a decrease in traffic in the Strait, diverting flows to other less monitored areas. And the second, the aggravating factor that the pandemic had for the economy in the countries of origin of the immigrants, such as Morocco, Algeria and Senegal, a fact that complicated the situation of many young people.

Last year’s statistics show that even with mobility restrictions as a result of the coronavirus, accounted for 30 percent more arrivals than in 2019. Numbers that had not been seen since the 2006 cayuco crisis, when more than 36,000 people arrived throughout the year.

The Algerian route has also experienced a significant increase in arrivals to the peninsula and the Balearic Islands. The Balearic Government Delegation points out that it was last year when the arrival of people by sea to the islands increased. “We haven’t seen this situation for two years. As of 2020 there was a great increase and this year is also being seen,” the Delegation states. “The vast majority are Algerians, although there are other nationalities; arrivals are concentrated in these months of September, October and November, when the sea is calmer and it is easier to reach land.”

The increase in entrances to the peninsula and the islands also means that the numbers of deaths and disappearances increase considerably compared to previous years. People who embark on boats trying to reach the Spanish coasts, in most cases in very poor conditions, without life jackets and sharing a minimum space with dozens of people for hours and even days, risk their lives in these conditions.

With numbers going up to October 1, the International Organization for Migration puts a little more than 1,050 people who have lost their lives or have disappeared on their journey to Spain. However, humanitarian organizations such as Caminando Fronteras, which monitors deaths and disappearances in the Mediterranean and the Atlantic, raise that figure to 2,000 deaths during the first half of the year, 526 percent more than last year, according to NGO data.

The Canarian route is considered by the United Nations to be one of the most dangerous in the world. In this, 785 people have died or have not been found. On the western Mediterranean route (Strait and Alboran Sea), 263 disappeared or lost their lives. Last year, 474 people died or disappeared and the previous year a total of 322 did.

The number of arrivals by sea to Ceuta has also grown by more than 142 percent. Until September 30 of last year, 286 people arrived in the autonomous city, compared to the 694 that have been counted so far in 2021. On the contrary, arrivals in Melilla fell by 73 percent: the 15 people who did so made in the first nine months of 2020 have dropped to four this year.

With regard to numbers of arrivals by land, Interior collects the entry of 1,593 migrants, although it points out that this is provisional data. Since the migration crisis in Ceuta in May, precipitated by a diplomatic clash between Rabat and Madrid, the ministry headed by Fernando Grande-Marlaska has not provided updated data on arrivals through the Tarajal Strait to the autonomous city. These figures, according to the ministry, are “under analysis and treatment.” In June, Interior accounted for more than 10,000 entries to Ceuta. All in all, until September 30 there have been 576 in total, 346 percent more than the 129 of the same period of 2020. Arrivals in Melilla also fall with regard to the land border: 1,017 people have crossed the fence this year, compared to the 1,254 that did the previous in this same period.

The data by nationality for this year has not yet been released, since at first the vast majority of those who arrive do not say which country they are from, so as to make any return procedure difficult, which entails the preparation of personal interviews with them. According to UNHCR data, during the past year the most common nationalities in these arrivals were Algerian (39 percent of cases), Moroccan (20 percent) and Malian (13 percent).

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