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Spain, Morocco Square Off After 7,000 Migrants Arrive By Sea

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A man is held by soldiers of the Spanish Army at the border of Morocco and Spain, at the Spanish enclave of Ceuta, on Tuesday, May 18, 2021. Ceuta, a Spanish city of 85,000 in northern Africa, faces a humanitarian crisis after thousands of Moroccans took advantage of relaxed border control in their country to swim or paddle in inflatable boats into European soil. Around 6,000 people had crossed by Tuesday morning since the first arrivals began in the early hours of Monday, including 1,500 who are presumed to be teenagers. (AP Photo/Javier Fergo)

(AP) — Spain has sent its military to the Moroccan border as thousands of Moroccans walked or swam into Europe for the second day in a row after Rabat loosened border controls in a diplomatic spat.

The sudden influx of migrants has created a humanitarian crisis for Ceuta, the Spanish city of 85,000 in North Africa that is separated from Morocco by a double-wide, 32-foot fence.

Overwhelmed soldiers separated the adults from the young and carried children in their arms on Tuesday while Red Cross workers helped an endless trickle of migrants who were emerging from the Mediterranean Sea water shivering and exhausted. Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez canceled a trip to Paris and flew to Ceuta.

 

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