Showing posts with label Spain. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Spain. Show all posts

June 20, 2020

Spanish Singer Comes Out on Instagram: "I'M Here to Tell You IAM a Homosexual and It's Ok"

Spanish singer Pablo Alboran came out as gay to his 5.4 million Instagram followers on Wednesday. 
In a three-minute long video, the 31-year-old singer, signed to Warner Music, shared his truth and told fans he hoped to make someone else's journey and coming out experience easier. 
'Today, I want my voice to be louder and for it to have more value and weight,' he said. 'I’m here to tell you that I am homosexual and it’s okay.'

March 25, 2020

Spanish Army Finds Home Care Residents Dead and Abandoned

Employees of a mortuary enter the crematorium of La Almudena cemetery with a coffin of a person who died of coronavirus disease in Madrid, March 23, 2020Image copyrightREUTERS
Image captionMadrid's main funeral home says its workers lack the equipment to deal with Covid-19 victims
Spanish soldiers helping to fight the coronavirus pandemic have found elderly patients in retirement homes abandoned and, in some cases, dead in their beds, the defence ministry has said.
Spanish prosecutors said an investigation had been launched.
The military has been brought in to help disinfect care homes in Spain, one of Europe's worst hit countries.
Meanwhile, an ice rink in Madrid is to be used as a temporary mortuary for Covid-19 victims, officials said.
The virus is spreading very fast in Spain - the second worst-hit European country after Italy. 
On Tuesday, the health ministry announced that the number of deaths had risen by 514 in the past 24 hours - a daily record. 
A total of 2,696 people have now died and there are 39,637 confirmed cases.
Banner image reading 'more about coronavirus'
Spanish Defence Minister Margarita Robles told the private TV channel Telecinco that the government was "going to be strict and inflexible when dealing with the way older people are treated" in retirement homes.
"The army, during certain visits, found some older people completely abandoned, sometimes even dead in their beds," she said.
The defence ministry said that staff at some care homes had left after the coronavirus was detected.
Health officials have said that in normal circumstances the bodies of deceased residents are put in cold storage until they are collected by the funeral services. 
But when the cause of death is suspected to be linked to coronavirus they are left in their beds until they can be retrieved by properly equipped funeral staff. In the capital Madrid, which has seen the highest number of cases and deaths, that could take up to 24 hours, officials said.
Spanish Health Minister Salvador Illa told a news conference that retirement homes were "an absolute priority for the government".
"We will exercise the most intensive monitoring of these centres," she added.
As the crisis in Madrid worsened, the city's municipal funeral home said it would stop the collection of Covid-19 victims from Tuesday because of a lack of protective equipment.
The city is to use a major ice rink, the Palacio de Hielo (Ice Palace), as a temporary mortuary where bodies will be stored until funeral homes can collect them, officials told Spanish media. 
Police and military wearing protective suits stand as a van leaves the Palacio de Hielo shopping mall where an ice rink was turned into a temporary morgue on March 23, 2020Image copyrightAFP
Image captionThe first coffins arrived at the Palacio de Hielo in Madrid on Monday
The Palacio de Hielo complex, which also includes shops, restaurants, a bowling alley and cinemas, is not far from the Ifema congress centre where a field hospital has been set up for coronavirus patients.
Spain is the second worst affected country in Europe after Italy, which now has the highest number of coronavirus-related deaths in the world.
Italian authorities said on Monday that 602 people with Covid-19 had died in the past 24 hours, bringing the total to 6,077.
But the daily increase was the smallest since Thursday, raising hope that stringent restrictions imposed by the government were starting to have an effect.

January 29, 2020

Yucatán Diversifies its Tourism Offer and Departs from the Shadow of Quintana Roo


Para fortalecer el rubro de diversidad, el estado forma parte de un programa piloto del gobierno federal para la comunidad LGBT+ que arrancó hace 10 meses.
 Juan Tolentino Morales 

The state is part of a pilot LGBT + tourism program and seeks part of the flow of visitors that the neighboring state concentrates on. 
 Madrid, España

To strengthen the diversity line, the state is part of a federal government pilot program for the LGBT + community that started 10 months ago. (LUNAMARINA / Getty Images / iStockphoto)
Madrid Spain
For Yucatan, the name of the game in tourism is diversification: in destinations, trying to exercise more inclusive tourism for communities such as LGBT +, and also decentralizing the high demand that giants like Chichen Itza receive. 
Michelle Friedman, secretary of tourism of Yucatan, explains that the state is a multi-segment destination, where niches such as business, wellness, luxury, gastronomy, culture and even more specific ones, such as LGBT +, have enormous development potential.

“It is a state that has everything, and that has been in the shadow of the neighboring state for many years (Quintana Roo). We have a lot to work on in terms of connectivity, services, training, tourism products, establishments, and promotion, and that is what we have been doing: finding that development potential that Yucatan has, but doing it correctly, in a sustainability framework ” , he said during the 40th edition of the International Tourism Fair (Fitur), which is held in Madrid.

To strengthen the area of ​​diversity, the state is part of a federal government pilot program for the LGBT + community that started 10 months ago, which consists of raising awareness and training of destinations, hotels and service providers, in the first phase. Then, it will prioritize the development of specific products for this segment, as well as the adaptation of the latest trends in digital marketing and promotion, explains Oriol Pamies, CEO of Queer Destinations, a company that has accompanied the state in this process.

"The goal for 2020 is that every month we work with our team of trainers in a different destination, closing the year with businesses trained in more than 20 destinations (adding those of the first phase)," he said. 

This segment also has significant economic spill potential. According to LGBT Capital estimates, in 2018 the LGBT + community - made up of 496 million people - made a worldwide consumption of 3.6 billion dollars, so it is not enough to attract tourists, but also to distribute them in the attractions that house the state.

Therefore, Friedman points out that work has been done on decentralization and inclusion so that tourism benefits the entire population, in a work where the capital, Mérida, and the main archaeological destination, Chichen Itza, are not ceased to strengthen, but which contemplates the rest of the state.

“This is the case of Tekax, Las Coloradas, Río Lagartos, and we have worked hard to boost our magical towns in Izamal and Valladolid. We have made long-range political strategies in the field involving academia, private initiative, and government, along with other agencies that allow us to guide us. ”

Yucatan closed the year with several improvements in its tourist flows: it was in the first places of growth in tourists with a 15% increase compared to 2018, and broke the barrier of 2 million visitors, not counting hikers to other products and archeological zones, with which the indicator doubles, ensures the official.

During the year, more than 15,000 million pesos of private tourist investment were captured this year, and also added six new routes in air connectivity and 51 additional cruises.

Translation by Google

January 28, 2019

{{Updates}} 2 Yr Old Boy Still Trapped in 10 Inch Wide 330 Foot Deep Hole 2 UPDATEs FOLLOW

UPDATE:...Sat. Jan. 27.2019    The body of the boy has been found and no one is surprised the boy was no longer alive. Everyone grieves for his parents.
Image result for julen rosello rescue
 Father of Julen Rosello

Crews are preparing to carefully dig a tunnel on Friday in hopes of rescuing the 2-year-old boy who’s been trapped in a hole for five days in Spain.

Drilling equipment and giant pipes were delivered to the site in Totalan, located in the southern part of the country, to start work on a vertical tunnel to reach little Julen Rosello.

“The priority now is the works on the vertical tunnel,” said a spokeswoman for the regional government in Malaga.

The toddler slipped down the nearly 330-foot-deep hole, which is just 10 inches wide, on Sunday after wandering away from his parents as they prepared lunch.

Rescue efforts have been thwarted by a blockage created by soil and rocks about two-thirds of the way down — prompting workers to dig alternative holes to try to reach the boy.

“The terrain’s geology is complicated, and that’s slowing down the works,” said Angel Garcia, the leading engineer coordinating the search-and-rescue operation.

Authorities said Julen could still be alive if there is enough oxygen under the obstruction.

With Post wires

Follow up:
 I would like to follow up on the latest and report that this is not the first toddler this family is lost in tragic unusual circumstances.
A funeral was held Sunday for the toddler who fell into a deep borehole in Spain, ending a frantic search that lasted nearly two weeks. The search for 2-year-old Julen Roselló captivated people around the world, and hundreds of people reportedly attended his memorial service in Spain’s Málaga province to pay their respects. In 2017, according to the newspaper, the family’s 3-year-old son, Oliver, died of cardiac arrest during a family walk on the beach

January 18, 2019

300 Ft. Deep Down Trapped in a Well Lies a 2Yr Old Boy in Spain

Image result for well in spain 2 year old trapped
 300 ft down a boy lies, Everyone hopes alive

The well is over 300 feet deep, but less than a foot wide. And somewhere in its depths a 2-year-old boy is believed to be trapped.

Frantic efforts to rescue the toddler, Julen Roselló, have been underway in the countryside northeast of the port city of Málaga after he was said to have slipped down the well while his parents were preparing Sunday lunch.

About 100 rescuers have been working at the site, covered round-the-clock by the Spanish news media, while Julen’s father has made repeated pleas on television for every effort to be made to find his son alive.

On Wednesday, the authorities in southern Spain announced that according to a preliminary DNA test, hair found in mud excavated from the well was the boy’s, confirming his presence. He is believed to be more than 250 feet underground, beneath earth dislodged by his fall. 

The rescue operation includes specialists dispatched from Asturias, the coal mining region of northern Spain, as well as a Swedish company that provided the technology to help save 33 Chilean miners trapped for two months underground in 2010.

To reach Julen, rescuers are drilling two separate tunnels, one of which runs closely parallel to the well while the other is designed to open an alternative horizontal access route, using as a starting point a platform excavated into the hillside near the well.

They are also using special machinery to remove earth that is blocking access to the deepest section of the well, and installing a tube inside the shaft to reduce the risk of more earth falling into the well.

José Roselló, Julen’s father, told reporters that “we have an angel that will help my son come out alive as soon as possible.” Julen’s parents already lost their first son, who died when he was 3 from a congenital heart defect.

María Gámez, a local official in Málaga, told reporters on Wednesday that preliminary DNA testing was conducted on hair found within some of the muddy earth extracted from the well, which amounted to the first “scientific evidence” confirming that Julen was down below. 

Jesús Esteban Gutiérrez, a colonel from Spain’s military police, told local news media that a dozen teams were involved in the rescue operation, but the police had also received over 60 additional offers of help from companies worldwide. “We’ve lost count,” he said.

The media spotlight on the rescue operation in southern Spain is reminiscent of that triggered by past efforts, like the one last year that saved 12 boys and their soccer coach who were trapped for more than two weeks in a flooded cave system in Thailand.

Another hopeful parallel may be the case of Jessica McClure, who fell down an abandoned well in Texas as an 18-month-old in 1987, and remained trapped for 58 hours until rescuers completed a parallel shaft and pulled her out. She was caked with dirt, but healthy.

Image result for well in spain 2 year old trapped


January 18, 2018

US Looses Tourism Battle to SPAIN!

 Barcelona both cosmopolitan and historic

Spain has replaced the United States as the No. 2 tourism destination in the world, according to a United Nations agency.
While France has retained the top spot with the most visitors, the United States has lost out to Spain for second place, according to the World Tourism Organization, a U.N. agency.
In 2017, an estimated 82 million travelers visited Spain, leapfrogging the U.S. for the second spot, the UNWTO told ABC News. The year before, the U.S. welcomed 75.6 million visitors -- edging out Spain by just 300,000, the UN agency confirmed.
Official numbers will be published in the spring, the UNWTO said.

 Very cosmopolitan Madrid at night
  In the U.S., too, the U.S. Travel Association showed that in the first six months of 2017, there were six percent fewer tourists compared to the previous year. The group, according to Deutsche Welle, a German broadcaster, also said U.S. tourism may have suffered from a global reaction to President Trump and his "America First" agenda.
"Many international travelers may have drastically misunderstood Trump's intentions as wanting to discourage international visitors generally, not just those who pose a security risk," a statement by the US Travel Association — the leading trade group of the industry — declared. In France -- despite terror attacks or attempts in France throughout 2017 -- the country still has a major pull: Paris.
 "These days we have to acknowledge we are living in a world where anything can happen, anywhere, at any place," Joseph Carter, 41, a medical sales representative, told ABC News.
Carter was planning to travel from his Miami, where he lives, to Paris with his family.
"And Paris is Paris," he said. "My daughter is 10. I don't want to give any kind of power to fears. I want her to see Paris." 

UNWTO'S Zurab Pololikashvili would not provide any specific information about why the U.S. lost the tourist battle with Spain despite a highly publicized independence crisis in one of its regions, Catalonia, home to the popular destination Barcelona.
There was also a terror attack in Barcelona in August, in which 16 people, including an American, were killed.
James, a 27-year-old backpacker visiting Madrid, told ABC News that if you're visiting a country where a terror attacked occurred, it doesn't necessarily mean you'll be directly affected by the incident.
"These days you have to be more rational," said James, who declined to give his last name. 
 Toledo, Spain

Meanwhile, Mohammed Garcia, a Spanish national bank employee in Madrid, told ABC that he did not feel comfortable traveling to the United States.
"I don't know if as a [Spaniard] I would be welcomed," Garcia, 37, said. "I am hesitating between France or south of Spain."

"I can't go back to Spain because I won't want to leave" Adam Gonzalez, NYC

August 15, 2017

Spanish Police Breaks Up Forced Transgender Prostitution Ring from Spain-Venezuela

Transsexuals from Venezuela forced into prostitution in Spain
This file image shows a prostitute standing at a bar near the French border. Photo: AFP
Spanish police said Monday that they had broken up a network that was forcing transsexuals into prostitution, after luring most of them to Spain from Venezuela.
"Police have arrested 14 people and freed 24 victims holed up in apartments in inhumane conditions," the police said in statement.
The victims "had to remain available 24/7 for clients to whom they also had
to offer all sorts of drugs."
The network mainly found its victims during the "Miss Trans" contest held in Venezuela, police said.
The victims were not aware they were going to Spain to become prostitutes, and were tricked with other enticements.
The network "paid for breast implants and the cost of the trip", police said.
But once they arrived their papers were taken away and they were forced into prostitution to reimburse a debt of €15,000 ($17,700).

Reuters reports:

MADRID (Reuters) – Spanish police have dismantled a prostitution network that exploited transsexuals recruited in fake “Miss Trans” competitions in Venezuela that promised winners the opportunity of a new life in Spain. Police said on Monday they had freed over 20 victims forced to live in “inhumane conditions” in overcrowded apartments in Barcelona and Palma de Mallorca where they had to pay off debts through prostitution and drug dealing. The network lured transsexuals to Spain by offering to pay for their travel and accommodation, along with new breast implants, police said in a statement. The network’s leader promised them “great prosperity.” When the individuals arrived in Spain, the network confiscated travel documents and imposed a debt per person of 15,000 euros (13,617 pounds) for their return. They had to be available 24 hours a day to clients, police said. The operation led to the arrest of 14 people suspected of managing the network, which earned up to 1 million euros ($1.18 million) over five years, police said.

(Reporting by Emily Lupton; Editing by Angus Berwick and Alister Doyle)

August 28, 2015

Imagine if Wars were fought like Spain fights “La Tomatina” A Tomato Food Fight


Buñol, near Valencia in southern Spain, has held the hot mess of a festival 'La Tomatina' for the last 70 years.
The festival began on a hot August day in 1945, when locals gathered to watch a traditional Catalan 'Giants and Big-Heads' fairytale parade. 
There were some sharp elbows involved to bag the best viewing spots, which led one frustrated member of the crowd to pick up the nearest projectile - the tomatoes outside a grocery - and fling them at the crowd.
And thus, a noble tradition was born:
The world's biggest food fight attracts 20,000 revellers every year - but Buñol's biggest secret is probably that it doesn't actually grow any tomatoes. More than 54 tonnes are imported to the village for the festival annually, and even if Buñolians wanted to grow their own, they'd never be able to meet demand.
While some question whether the hassle and expense is worth it, one side-effect is that the village is left spotless once it's been hosed down because the acidity in the fruit is a cleaning agent. 
And let's face it: could you have this much fun not bathing in a street full of squashed tomatoes?

July 6, 2015

Catholic Spain 40yrs Dictatorship Follow 10 yrs Same sex Marriage

 Cosmopolitan Madrid, Chueca, Spain 

In the summer of 2005, the socialist Spanish government legalized gay marriage in Spain. My overwhelmingly Catholic country, with a legacy of a 40-year-old fascist dictatorship that even banned divorce, surprisingly became the third European Union member to authorize same-sex unions.Ten years and around 28,000 couples married later, a whole generation of LGBT people has grown up. We have developed our sexual and family choices in an environment where we are as free to marry as we are to eschew marriage as an old-fashioned and cheesy option.
As many in the US celebrated last week’s Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage across the country, I counted myself lucky to have lived with this freedom for a decade.
Here’s some of what that decade has taught us in Spain’s LGBT community, and some takeaways for our US counterparts:
Equality is a daily, unfinished fight

No sooner had same-sex unions arrived arrived in Spain, as attacks to those newly acquired rights came from various directions. The Popular Party, the Spanish conservative party, gave permission to its members not to marry gay couples, arguing conscientious objection. It also filed a claim that the law was unconstitutional, which was not resolved until 2012 when the Constitutional Court reaffirmed the law.
Today, the Spanish Roman Catholic Church keeps calling for demonstrations to defend what it calls “the traditional family” while untiringly denouncing gay marriage as a sign of a crisis in Spanish society. Its claim is that these unions should have a name that is not “marriage.”
Likewise, in the US, people and organizations in some states have already started looking for loopholes to get in the way of gay unions.
The focus should be on helping the next generations

We also soon found out that the law does not mean that younger generations are free from the homophobic behaviors and offensive comments that we grew up with.
In Spain, half of young gay people between 15 and 25 years report having suffered bullying in school (link in Spanish). And 43 percent of them have considered suicide, with 17 percent of them saying they have tried to hurt themselves. To teenagers facing discrimination, the knowledge that they can legally marry later may offer little comfort—the law makes it no easier for them to come out.
Coming out is just as tough for young LGBT Americans. According to a Pew Research report, 43 percent of LGBT people were older than 20 when they first came out to a friend or family member.
Spanish attitudes to LGBT issues have significantly changed over the decade that gay marriage has been legal. The percentage of people in Spain who support gay marriage increased seven points after the law, reaching a 75 percent in 2005.
And a 2013 Pew Research survey that asked if society should accept homosexuality found that 88 percent of Spaniards answered “yes”—compared with only 60 percent of Americans who replied the same.
It remains to be seen whether American attitudes will undergo a similar evolution. In Spain, policy clearly moved faster than societal attitudes, whereas in the US it has taken a while for the law to recognize an increasingly accepted reality.
Still, the mindsets of older people remain hard to change, on both sides of the Atlantic. Among my young Spanish friends who live openly, many are still to scared to come out to older members of their families.
Likewise, a Gallup survey found out that Americans over 65 are more likely to oppose gay marriage. And, as my colleague Meredith Bennett-Smith wrote not so long ago: That is not “a demographic that can be dismissed.”
“These are our aunts and uncles, our mentors, and our teachers,” she said. “It’s also a generation that remembers an era when homosexuality was still something best kept to oneself.”
LGBT discrimination takes many forms. In Spain, 60 percent of gay, transgender or bisexual reported to have experienced some form of discrimination in the workplace. (In the US, 21 percent of LGBT adults have suffer the same.)
And some marginalized groups have fewer changes in their treatment. Undocumented immigrants, gypsies and other ethnic minorities, older gay people, and residents of rural areas are more likely to experience discrimination, to live in poverty or to suffer violence due to their sexual orientation. Lesbian women are particularly vulnerable.
“It is time to stop thinking about same-sex marriage, and to make a way for other demands and needs,” said LGBT activist Lucas Platero in a recent article, (in Spanish), adding that those “may not be the concerns of the elite LGBT groups, but those of ordinary people.”
In recent years, a faction within the Spanish LGBT activist community called Critic Pride has arisen. This group argues that the original cause has been commodified by brands that sponsor parades, and that the rights of marginalized groups have been neglected or ignored. “A pride that makes dykes and the precarious realities of trans and migrants invisible cannot represent us,” said this year’s manifiesto (in Spanish).
In the US, some are already pointing out the next issues the LGBT agenda needs to address, particularly in underserved communities: violence, employment discrimination, poverty, and access to healthcare.
So, America: Now is the time to celebrate. But get back to work as soon as you can.

Maria Sanchez Diez

November 25, 2014

Three Priests Arrested in Spain in Sexual Abuse Scandal


 Police on Monday arrested three priests and a teacher in Spain’s Granada region as part of ongoing investigations into alleged child sexual abuse — the latest development in a case which has rocked Spain.

A judge overseeing the investigations ordered the arrests of the four men over allegations they had sexually abused at least one minor — a case that came to light after the alleged victim, now 24, wrote to Pope Francis outlining the abuse he had supposedly suffered several years earlier.
The pope reportedly called the victim on several occasions offering support and asking for forgiveness on behalf of the Catholic Church.
A total of ten priests and two laypeople are now being investigated by a Granada-based judge over their possible involvement in the paedophile ring. To date, no one has been charged with any offence.
Among those arrested on Monday — a group originally reported by some Spanish media outlets to comprise four priests — was the alleged leader of the group which is known as Los Romanones, according to Spain's El Mundo newspaper.
Announcing the arrests, Spain's Interior Minister Jorge Fernández Díaz highlighted the tough stance the Catholic Church had taken against sexual abuse in recent times.
"I don't believe anyone can doubt that John Paul II, Benedict XVI and, now, Pope Francis are being incredibly aggressive in their bid to eradicate this type of behaviour from the heart of the church," the minister said.
On Sunday, the Archbishop of Granada Francisco Javier Martínez asked for forgiveness for the "scandals" affecting the church, prostrating himself before Granada Cathedral's high altar, a gesture otherwise reserved for Good Friday.
"The evils of the Church are the evils of every one of us," he said, pleading for forgiveness.
Judicial sources last week told Spain's El País newspaper the alleged sex ring had acted like a sect, with boys supposedly drawn into the paedophiles’ sphere of influence by being taken on as altar boys or assistants.    
Court sources said the priests would try to brainwash children in secret meetings, at which sexual matters were discussed and the boys encouraged to perform sexual acts with the adults, who assured them that there was no sin in such encounters. 

November 17, 2014

USA is not the only one with Border problems, Spain is got hands full with Moroccans

Moroccans don’t have a good reputation in  Europe. They are seen as lazy and untrustworthy.
The work that Moroccans due can be compared to the work of immigrants here. But unlike immigrants that work hard at what ever work they can get here Moroccans don’t have 
that reputation. Instead they will clean your house totally, if you know what I mean.

The video and pics you are about to see is my way to compare Spain’s predicament with ours and the states with borders in the US. Spain does have a compassionate law for immigrants that once they hit spaniard’s 
soil they cannot be just deported. They are given free lawyers and an expensive waiting period of 
litigations and appeals before they can be deported. Spain not doing great economically lately, see
these influx of undocumented men jumping the border as a thread to their economic security.

On the video and pic you will see the Moroccans climbing and the police trying to get them down. 
Spain is being criticized for using force to get them down but I don’t know what they can use out of guns which is out of the question there to get these men to change their minds. Pleading obviously has not worked. This issue is so contentious that even the reporter who wrote the original post covered up his picture afraid from reprisals. Giving you this  background now I give you the story. Adam Gonzalez
Many African migrants, like Danny (in the centre of the photo), regularly try to scale the three fences separating Morocco from Melilla. Screen grab from a video filmed by the NGO  Prodein (Pro Derechos de la Infancia) on October 15. 

A video has emerged showing police beating up African migrants at the Spanish border. About 200 African migrants who were trying to get into Melilla - a Spanish enclave in northwest Morocco - were reportedly beaten up by Spain’s Guardia Civil (police) on October 15.

Nearly all of them were then illegally sent back to Morocco.

The immigrants, who hail from Sub-Saharan Africa, had tried to get past the triple fence separating Morocco from the Spanish enclave at about 6 am. Two men were beaten particularly badly by the Spanish Guardia Civil, including one named Danny, aged 23, from Cameroon. On a video broadcast by Prodein, a children’s rights NGO, policemen can be seen beating the young man with their batons as he climbs down a ladder. After being beaten over the head, Danny falls to the ground. He is then dragged off by the police, apparently unconscious.

“The images could not be clearer or more appalling,” said Judith Sunderland, senior Western Europe researcher at Human Rights Watch, after viewing the film.
Danny, a young man from Cameroon who tried to enter the Spanish enclave of Melilla, was injured by Spanish policemen. Video by  Prodein (Pro Derechos de la Infancia).

"When migrants are injured but conscious, they're sent directly back to Morocco"

Robert Bonet is a freelance photographer. He witnessed the police’s brutal treatment of the migrants last Wednesday.
I arrived on the scene at 9 am, three hours after the migrants started to rush the border. I learned that 200 people had set out to try to get into Spanish territory. But only about 100 of them were scaling the fences when I got there; the Moroccan police had blocked the others.

The border is composed of three Spanish fences. Just a few metres away, another fence is being built on the Moroccan side. When it’s finished, it will become even harder for migrants to get through and the Moroccan police will have more time to intervene.

On Protein’s video, you can see migrants – for the most part from Cameroon – who have reached the third Spanish fence. Danny, who was severely beaten, was taken to the hospital unconscious. Thankfully, he survived. Migrants who lose consciousness are always taken to the hospital by the police. However, those who are severely injured but still conscious are generally carried directly back to the Moroccan side. The police almost always use violence against migrants who try to scale the fences. On Wednesday, at least 40 of them were injured.

To justify this use of force, Melilla’s authorities issued a statement denouncing the migrants’ “extreme violence”, saying they carried “stones, sticks, ropes, hooks, knives and other sharp objects”. It also stated that some migrants had set fire to their clothes in order to throw them on the Spanish Guardia Civil. Five policemen were reportedly injured on Wednesday. However, only hooks, ropes, and a few sticks can be seen in the video published by the government (below) that shows what was confiscated from the migrants.

Bonet believes that the Spanish Guardia Civil are trying to portray the migrants as criminals.
“The ropes and hooks that you see in this video are used by the migrants to climb the fence, not to hurt the policemen. The Spanish Guardia Civil often try to distort the truth. They have never presented any proof that the migrants are violent. As for the fires, I didn’t see any when I arrived, so I can’t speak to that.

A video published by Melilla's authorities that show what was confiscated from migratns on October 15. 

"Once migrants are on Spanish soil, they can't immediately be deported"

Beyond the question of violence, sending migrants back to Morocco is contrary to the law, as Bonet explains:
Once they have crossed over the first fence, they’re in Spanish territory, according to a bilateral agreement signed by Spain and Morocco. This means that legally, they can’t immediately be deported back to Morocco, according to the Ley de Extranjeria [Editor’s Note: Spain’s law on foreigners entering its territory]. This law stipulates that once they’ve arrived on Spanish soil, migrants have the right to a lawyer and a translator, and to ask for asylum. They can only be deported once they’ve been refused asylum.

However, if the migrants haven’t gotten over all three fences, the Guardia Civil deems that they’re not yet in Spain and sends them back to Morocco. This is completely illegal. Moreover, they claim that they don’t send migrants back once they are over the third fence, but they still do it.

This protocol, which was signed by the head of the Spanish Guardia Civil, Ambrosio Martin Villasenor, thus goes against the Ley de Extranjeria. One month ago, a Melilla judge accused him of prevarication, meaning that he signed the document knowing full well that it was contrary to the law.

On October 17, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Nils Muižnieks, wrote on his Facebook page that “it is now necessary that an investigation is opened to establish accountability for police violence”. He added that “Spain has failed to uphold its international obligations in this field – sadly, this is not the first time.” On October 20, the UN’s refugee agency (UNHCR) called on the authorities to “adopt the necessary measures” so that migrants’ rights are respected.

In the last few months, more and more migrants have tried to illegally enter Spain. In 2013, 4,235 of them managed to enter Melilla and Ceuta, Spain’s two enclaves in Morocco.
Another video filmed by the NGO  Prodein on October 15, showing an African migrant being illegally sent back to Morocco. He is carried by Guardia Civil officers who have tied his hands and feet.

Post written with FRANCE 24 journalist Chloé Lauvergnier (@clauvergnier).

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