Immigration, cooperation against terrorism and the development of the Operation Crossing the Strait have set the tone for a meeting that takes place in the midst of the crisis with Algeria

España y Marruecos destacan la cooperación "ejemplar" en materia de seguridad

PHOTO/MINISTERIO DEL INTERIOR - The Moroccan Minister of the Interior, Abdelouafi Laftit, together with his Spanish counterpart, Fernando Grande-Marlaska

The Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, has met with his Moroccan counterpart, Abdelouafi Laftit, in the midst of the diplomatic crisis with Algeria. Although this is the tenth time that the two ministers have met, this is the first time they have met after it became known that Marlaska's mobile phone was spied on with Pegasus spyware during the diplomatic crisis between Spain and Morocco.

According to ministerial sources, at this meeting the two ministers are said to have discussed issues related to Operation Crossing the Strait, which began on Wednesday after a two-year interruption, in 2020 due to the pandemic and in 2021 due to the bilateral crisis.

This operation involves more than 15,000 agents belonging to the Security Forces and Corps who watch over the transit of 3 million Maghrebi people who move through the national territory to reach Morocco, where they spend the summer period. 


However, according to the same sources, no mention was made of the progress of the opening of customs in Ceuta and Melilla, a commitment that would have been sealed between Madrid and Rabat after the government of Pedro Sánchez supported Moroccan sovereignty over Western Sahara as a solution to the conflict.

After the meeting, the Interior Ministry issued a joint communiqué, published in Spanish and French, in which it underlined "the exemplary cooperation" between the two ministries. According to the note, this gesture materialises "the new dynamic" of relations between the two countries, based on "transparency, mutual respect, reciprocal trust and frank and loyal cooperation".

With Marlaska at the helm of the Interior Ministry, he has always reiterated the need for diplomatic relations between Spain and Morocco to be maintained in a favourable manner, above all in those areas related to security and immigration, especially in the fight against terrorism and transnational crime.

The Interior Ministry stressed that "the exchange of operational information is key to preventing the fight against irregular immigration and to dismantling criminal organisations dedicated to migrant trafficking"


Similarly, one of the key points on the agenda was immigration. In this regard, they spoke about the irregular flow of immigrants through the Canary Islands route

In just a month and a half of this year, the number of immigrants arriving in Spain was close to 5,000. They are said to have arrived at different islands of the Canary Islands in a total of 101 dinghies. Alongside this, in the first quarter of the year alone the arrival of migrants grew by 59% compared to 2021. 

Earlier this month, the Cabildo Insular de Lanzarote reported that a total of 55 dinghies had been counted, which would have transported 2,484 people to the easternmost island of the archipelago

The meeting also reportedly discussed current cooperation on terrorism between the two countries. Both ministries agreed to describe this cooperation as "exemplary". The latest example of this cooperation is the arrest of a jihadist of Moroccan nationality in an operation by the National Police and the Mossos d'Esquadra's general intelligence units against jihadist terrorism.