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The number of refugees in the Canary Islands is growing: what to do?

Following the other islands on the external borders of the EU, the migration crisis reached the Canary Islands: every day more and more refugees from the African coast arrive there, and local departments are no longer able to cope with the situation. Observers urge policymakers not to limit the issue solely to border protection, but also to consider aspects such as diplomacy and integration.

Balancing security and integration

Migration issues should be considered in all the complexity and multidimensionality of this phenomenon, political scientist Augusto Delcader Palacios writes in El Espanol:

“The prevailing discourse now is that migration must be stopped because it poses a security threat. ... It's a naive version: we must help countries on the ground so that people do not have to become refugees. ... Regardless of the political orientation of the ruling party, migration has always been the prerogative of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, that is, it has been associated with the police and security. Accordingly, the entire importance of the integration of migrants and the scale of this problem is thereby ignored and simply disappears from the zone of visibility. ... Migration policy must strike a balance between integration and border security. The debate on migration control must return to the most fundamental issues.”

Spanish left ruined relations with Morocco

The ruling coalition of the left has itself provoked the current situation, notes La Razon indignantly:

“If we add the terrorist threat and drug trafficking to illegal migration, it becomes clear that stability in Morocco is of critical importance for Spain — and always and invariably. And this was well understood by all previous governments. ... however, the current coalition led by Sanchez and Iglesias has behaved irresponsibly and disloyal towards our neighbors — and also in such a delicate and important issue as Western Sahara.”

Trampling on European values

The current plight is the result of inhuman decisions made in the distant world capitals of Madrid and Brussels, writes El Pais:

“The government refuses to send migrants further to the mainland, where some of them could easily be accommodated in existing hostels for refugees. Europe also opposes the transfer of refugees to the mainland, as this would mean accepting the fact that they will simply disperse across the continent. ... One thing is clear: the inhuman treatment of migrants is a blow to both Spanish and European values.”

Madrid must demand a decision from Brussels

The Spanish government has thrown the Canary Islands in trouble, writes El Mundo:

“The fact that the Minister of the Interior does not use the personnel and resources available to Spain to cope with the daily arrival of refugees on the islands is a manifestation of irresponsibility that cannot be explained. The matter is aggravated by the apparent inability of Prime Minister Sanchez to encourage EU agencies to seek a solution to the crisis. This crisis affects the entire EU, and now we feel the consequences of the fact that we do not have a common serious strategy, backed by sufficient funds.”

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