By Nacho Doce and Inti Landauro
BARCELONA – A group of 39 Palestinian passengers on a flight from Egypt to Colombia used a layover at Barcelona airport to demand political asylum in Spain, a government spokeswoman said on Friday.
After landing in Barcelona from Cairo on Monday, the passengers were scheduled to board another plane to Colombia and Ecuador but instead sought out authorities in the airport to make the asylum request, the spokeswoman for the central government’s regional office said.
Local migration officials are evaluating the cases of the passengers from Cairo, the spokeswoman said.
“They are in a special room and all their necessities are being taken care of,” she said. “They are there voluntarily,” she said, declining to give further details.
It is the second attempt by a group of airline passengers to gain entry to Spain in less than two weeks.
On Nov. 6, a group of 21 passengers ran from a plane on the runway at Palma de Mallorca airport after an emergency landing that was prompted by a passenger faking illness.
However, the government spokeswoman said the Palestinian passengers in Barcelona had not staged any incident.