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Morocco remains firm in its commitment to curb illegal immigration to Europe

The Kingdom foiled more than 40,000 irregular migration attempts and border authorities made more than 7,000 arrests of migrants trying to cross the border so far this year
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REUTERS/JESÚS BLASCO DE AVELLANEDA  -   African migrants sit on top of a border fence during an attempt to cross into Spanish territory, between Morocco and the enclave of Melilla

Morocco has managed to frustrate more than 40,000 irregular migration attempts to Europe so far this year, a situation that reaffirms the Kingdom's commitment to managing migration. To this end, the Moroccan authorities made more than 7,000 arrests of immigrants trying to cross the border into European territory.

For Khalid Zerouali, Director of Immigration and Border Surveillance at the Moroccan Institute for Strategic Studies (IRES), this action is a declaration of intent on the part of the Kingdom with respect to its fight against this type of migration, pointing out that these figures "show conclusive results" on which to base this commitment.

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REUTERS/JON NAZCA - Migrants run towards the fence separating Morocco from Spain

Although he added that "the fact that there is a decrease in arrivals on the Spanish coast does not mean that the pressure here in Morocco has decreased".

It was he himself who provided these figures in a recent interview with Agencia EFE. In addition, Zerouali stated that attempts to enter Europe irregularly via Morocco increased by 11% at the end of July compared to the same period last year.

Moroccan authorities also dismantled 124 smuggling networks operating at the Kingdom's border so far this year, a figure that once again demonstrates Morocco's commitment to ending the scourge of this type of criminal activity in the country.

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AP/BERNAT ARMANGUE - Image of migrants near the border between Spain and Morocco

But the Kingdom's law enforcement agencies not only combat irregular migration through ground-level operations, but Morocco is also active at the regional and international level, providing advice and expertise in the fight against irregular migration.

"Morocco is a state that lives up to its duties, it has always shown its willingness at all regional and international levels to share its experience with friendly countries," said the IRES director.

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AFP/FADEL SENNA - Archive photo in the Spanish enclave of Ceuta

He also wanted to make it clear that Morocco "does not exploit anything for political reasons", so accusing the Kingdom of doing so "is unfounded".

Europe also takes responsibility and is aware of the work that Morocco is carrying out, which is why last month the EU pledged 500 million euros in aid to contribute to the North African country's migration management efforts.