Tag Archives: Francisco Javier Velázquez

Record Numbers of Migrants Reaching Ceuta and Melilla by Sea

Since the beginning of July there has been a surge in the number of irregular migrants entering the North African Spanish autonomous cities of Ceuta and Melilla.  Over 200 migrants have entered Ceuta mostly by swimming or using small rafts to enter the territory from Morocco.  Melilla has reportedly had approximately 207 migrants reach its territory during the same period.  This is the largest number of irregular entries by sea in recent years, though the number is small compared to the events of 2005 when numerous migrants were able to traverse the border fences of the two cities.

The CETI (Centre for Temporary Stay of Immigrants) in Melilla is at roughly twice its capacity and is holding over 730 immigrants.  The CETI in Ceuta has an official capacity of 512 and is now holding over 680 migrants. The three main political groups in Ceuta’s local government have called on the Spanish government to transfer migrants from Ceuta to the mainland in order to relief the overcrowding.

Francisco Javier Velázquez, the director general of the Spanish police and Civil Guard just completed a visit to Rabat to seek greater cooperation from Morocco in controlling the migratory flow towards the Spanish territories.  Several media reports suggest that Moroccan authorities have reduced police and border guard patrols near the Spanish cities because they were deployed elsewhere in Morocco in response to the large demonstrations surrounding the referendum on the new Moroccan constitution.  With the internal demonstrations becoming smaller and less frequent, Spanish authorities believe that the Moroccan border patrols will soon be restored.

Click here, here, here, here, here, and here for articles. (all ES)

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Filed under Data / Stats, Mediterranean, Morocco, News, Spain

First Meeting of EU Committee on Operational Cooperation on Internal Security – COSI

The Standing Committee on Operational Cooperation on Internal Security was established by the EU Council pursuant to Council decisions of 27 November 2009 (16515/09) and 5 February 2010 (5949/10) based on the guidelines established by the Treaty of Lisbon. Its stated objective is “to strengthen the co-ordination of the operational actions between EU Member States in relation to internal security.”

COSI met for the first time on 11 March in Brussels.  The Spanish EU Presidency’s web site states: “The Spanish Director General of the Police and Civil Guard, Francisco Javier Velázquez, chaired the first meeting of … COSI …which began the process of designing a joint strategy to deal with global threats. The meeting was attended by directors of police and heads of security forces in Europe, who examined joint measures for tackling terrorism, human trafficking, drug trafficking and cyber crime. …”

“In relation to drug trafficking, [COSI is] studying proposals from Member States, such as a French operational project to deal with trafficking from Africa, or the possibility of creating EU platforms in affected African countries.”

“Other tasks entrusted to COSI include co-ordinating the action of European agencies with responsibilities in areas of justice and home affairs, such as EUROPOL, EUROJUST, FRONTEX and CEPOL. It must also ensure that none of their activities overlap and that there is a real focus on their requirements.”

Click here for article posted on Spanish EU Presidency’s site.

Click here for article.

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Filed under European Union, Frontex, News, Spain