Moroccan coastal patrol intercepts migrant boat bound for the Canary Islands

Moroccan coastal patrol intercepts migrant boat bound for the Canary Islands

The Moroccan military intercepted a boat carrying 54 irregular migrants near Dakhla on Wednesday, approximately 186 kilometers south of the city. The migrants, identified as sub-Saharan and Asian, had embarked from the Mauritanian coast with the goal of reaching the Canary Islands. After reaching the stationary boat, the crew of the Moroccan coastal patrol vessel provided the migrants with necessary medical attention before handing them over to the Royal Gendarmerie.

Despite efforts by Moroccan authorities to deter irregular migration to Europe, an increasing number of migrants are making the journey to the Canary Islands. In January alone, about 6,600 individuals attempted the crossing- a tenfold rise over the same period last year. Morocco, Algeria, and Bangladesh, have emerged as the primary sources of migrants attempting to cross into Europe via the western Mediterranean. While migration attempts across the western route have fallen 66 % compared to the previous month, it now accounts for nearly half of all irregular migration to Europe. The rising numbers are driven in part by deteriorating security, economic stagnation, and political upheaval across the Sahel region.

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