Spain has demanded that African countries do more to stop illegal migration. This comes after the rate of arrivals in the Canary Islands hit a record – a reported 1,965 since Friday. The total so far this year is more than 21,000.
Deputy Prime Minister Maria Teresa Fernandez de la Vega said in a speech to Spanish ambassadors: “We remind the countries of origin of these immigrants arriving on our shores these past weeks that we are not going to tolerate it any longer. We will no longer accept the non-respect of signed bilateral and multilateral agreements, and we are going to act firmly. I repeat: let it be perfectly clear that all those who enter Spain in an irregular way, sooner or later, will leave Spain.”
Analysts say trade, aid and cooperation accords could give Madrid many means of putting pressure on the poor states the immigrants come from, especially if it gets European Union backing.
But Fernandez de la Vega did not say how Spain intended to proceed.