More than 200 would-be migrants attempt to jump Melilla border

Latest incident is second in 24 hours after 10 reached Spanish soil on Tuesday

Immigrants attempt to jump the Melilla border fence.Photo: atlas

Around 200 would-be migrants tried to jump the border fence from Morocco into Spain’s North African exclave of Melilla in the early hours of Wednesday morning – the second such attempt in 24 hours.

Around 100 people remain trapped in the area between the two parts of fence that comprise the border, according to police sources quoted by news agency Efe.

On Tuesday, 100 migrants had tried to get across the frontier but only 10 successfully made it onto Spanish soil.

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Wednesday’s events occurred around 6.30am in a section of the fence known as Villa Pilar, although several other smaller groups simultaneously tried to rush the border at various other points. Migrants have chosen the area several times before as the surrounding topography aids the run toward the fence and subsequent climb.

The local CETI temporary immigrant holding center has yet to report any new arrivals, meaning no migrants seem to have made it across this time. However, official data has yet to be released.

Staff at the center commented that there had been a commotion among a group being held there early in the morning, indicating that they may have been in “telephone contact with other immigrants on Gurugu” – the mountain on the Moroccan side of the border where migrants camp out before making their jump – who had alerted them of their attempt.

Melilla has been experiencing considerable pressure on its frontiers in the last two days. As well as the 100 people who tried to make it across by land on Tuesday, another group attempted to cross by sea close to the Dique area that separates Moroccan and Spanish waters. Several migrants threw themselves into the water and had to be rescued.

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