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Spanish king causes stir with North Africa visit

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Spanish king causes stir with North Africa visit


It has angered some, but delighted others. Spain’s King Juan Carlos has made his first ever trip as head of state to the country’s north African enclave of Ceuta.

Thousands of people have turned out to welcome the king, accompanied by his wife Queen Sofia.
They will visit the nearby enclave of Melilla tomorrow.

The trip is controversial, however. Morocco, which claims the enclaves as its own, has recalled its ambassador to Spain in protest.

For the crowds who gathered to greet the king, however, there was celebration.

One woman said: “I am Spanish, Muslim. We are happy to have Juan Carlos come here. He is welcome.”

Another said: “He should have come before, because it is a bit of Spain that is very important.”

In Rabat, Moroccan MPs reportedly took part in a protest, described as a sit-in, in the country’s parliament.

And several hundred protesters voiced their anger at the king’s visit on the Moroccan side of the border with Ceuta.

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