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Malaga Port has received 80 per cent fewer migrants so far this year

Archive photos of migrants receiving assistance at Malaga Port in October 2018.
Archive photos of migrants receiving assistance at Malaga Port in October 2018. / FERNANDO TORRES
  • According to official figures, last year 11,062 people were brought into the port, compared with 2,269 up until the beginning of August

A recent analysis of migratory movements in the western Mediterranean shows that there has been a "very significant" drop so far this year.

Causes

Why has there been a reduction in the arrival of migrants to the western Mediterranean this year? The acting Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, has said recently that the general reduction in migratory pressure is thanks to work carried out jointly between the Spanish government and that of Morocco, which is a hot spot for migration towards the Mediterranean. In fact, sources at the ministry have said on several occasions that this year is the first time that the trend in irregular migration by sea has reduced since it began to increase in 2014.

New resources

Acting government representative in Malaga, María Gámez, also stressed the work in coordination with Morocco. There has also been a change to the way the government attends to the migrants, she said, and that this has been considerable. She points out the importance of the creation of a coordination authority for migration in the Strait of Gibraltar, which is now based in Malaga and "forecasts, alerts and monitors" migration.

There have also been improvements to Cruz Roja facilities. "The migrants are no longer put up in sports centres when they arrive, because there are infrastructures and mechanisms which work. Before, the situation was resolved through good faith; we have taken a giant step in this matter," sheexplains.