The number of migrants who attempted to climb the fence between Melilla and Morocco has nearly doubled in the last year. Between January 1 and September 17 of this year nearly 3000 migrants attempted to cross the Melilla fence (compared with 1,610 during the same period last year).
So what is the official response? Reinstall razor wire at the top of the 23 feet fence to repeat the fiasco in 2006 when they were forced to remove it as rather than preventing desperate immigrants, it sliced them up as they scrambled over.
But the new genius plan to prevent mass immigration to Europe has a fatal flaw. The razor wire is only in the areas of the fence commonly attacked. The rest of the fence is unchanged. Cue Monday’s mass dawn assault on the fence at Rosto Gordo, a part of the fence which does not have the razor wire. Of these, 80-100 managed to find their way over. Then Tuesday’s 100 strong attempt when one migrant died from his injuries by falling off the fence. And then of course Wednesday evening when 200 stormed Barrio Chino at 8 pm but were beaten back by Moroccan forces. Apparently the immigrants showed a “violent attitude” by throwing stones. Of course, the Moroccan authorities who beat them with large sticks must have been full of joy and love.
Surely someone somewhere should have worked this one out when they were making their cunning razor wire plan. The forest dwelling migrants waiting just up the mountain may be destitute but they are not stupid. They will continue to attempt the fence no matter what and they will get over.
Here’s to more wasted EU money not only on an idiotic and poorly thought out plan, but on what Amnesty international calls “a serious step backwards” in the respect for human rights.
Please sign a petition to have the razor wire removed here.