Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?

World

Rights groups urge UN, Europe to stop ‘illegal’ Spain deportations

-

Amnesty International and 12 other human rights groups urged the United Nations and Europe on Thursday to press Spain to stop the "illegal" deportations of migrants who reach its territories in north Africa.

Spain's conservative government has said it will pass a legal amendment authorising police to expel migrants who climb over the fences from Morocco into Melilla and Ceuta, two Spanish-governed territories which have Europe's only land borders with Africa.

Amnesty led a group of 13 Spanish and international rights groups in writing to top migration officials "demanding them to pressure the Spanish government to withdraw the planned amendment".

Spanish authorities say thousands of Africans have tried to climb over the seven-meter (23-foot) high fences into Melilla and Ceuta this year, causing numerous migrants and police officers to get injured.

Human rights groups complain Spain has been breaking the law by instantly deporting such migrants, saying this denies those fleeing war and persecution the right to apply for asylum.

One local rights group, Prodein, on October 15 filmed Spanish officers beating a migrant as he clung to the fence and then carrying him apparently unconscious back to the Moroccan side.

If the new measure is passed, "it will formalise this practice of illegally deporting migrants and asylum seekers to Morocco," Amnesty said in a statement.

"Automatic deportations violate EU law as well as Spain's obligations under international laws of human and refugees' rights."

Amnesty said the 13 groups sent letters to Francois Crepeau, the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, and Nils Muiznieks, the Council of Europe's Commissioner for Human Rights.

Spain's government denies that migrants who make it over the fence should be considered as having reached Spanish territory and says it has the right to deport those it catches climbing over.

It blames human-trafficking gangs for bringing the migrants to the border and says the European Union has a duty to help it shoulder the burden of the problem.

Amnesty International and 12 other human rights groups urged the United Nations and Europe on Thursday to press Spain to stop the “illegal” deportations of migrants who reach its territories in north Africa.

Spain’s conservative government has said it will pass a legal amendment authorising police to expel migrants who climb over the fences from Morocco into Melilla and Ceuta, two Spanish-governed territories which have Europe’s only land borders with Africa.

Amnesty led a group of 13 Spanish and international rights groups in writing to top migration officials “demanding them to pressure the Spanish government to withdraw the planned amendment”.

Spanish authorities say thousands of Africans have tried to climb over the seven-meter (23-foot) high fences into Melilla and Ceuta this year, causing numerous migrants and police officers to get injured.

Human rights groups complain Spain has been breaking the law by instantly deporting such migrants, saying this denies those fleeing war and persecution the right to apply for asylum.

One local rights group, Prodein, on October 15 filmed Spanish officers beating a migrant as he clung to the fence and then carrying him apparently unconscious back to the Moroccan side.

If the new measure is passed, “it will formalise this practice of illegally deporting migrants and asylum seekers to Morocco,” Amnesty said in a statement.

“Automatic deportations violate EU law as well as Spain’s obligations under international laws of human and refugees’ rights.”

Amnesty said the 13 groups sent letters to Francois Crepeau, the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, and Nils Muiznieks, the Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights.

Spain’s government denies that migrants who make it over the fence should be considered as having reached Spanish territory and says it has the right to deport those it catches climbing over.

It blames human-trafficking gangs for bringing the migrants to the border and says the European Union has a duty to help it shoulder the burden of the problem.

AFP
Written By

With 2,400 staff representing 100 different nationalities, AFP covers the world as a leading global news agency. AFP provides fast, comprehensive and verified coverage of the issues affecting our daily lives.

You may also like:

Sports

The Seine has been clean enough to swim for most of the past 12 days, Paris city hall said Friday.

Entertainment

Filmmaker Dar Dowling chatted about directing her latest film "Hineni" and being a part of the digital age.

Business

US carrier Southwest Airlines plans to jointly develop a fleet of electric air taxis to serve the California market.

Entertainment

Actress Amy Tsang (The CW’s "Kung Fu") chatted about "Stars Wars: The Acolyte," and she remembers the late "General Hospital" actor Johnny Wactor.