The Melilla port will invest over half a million euros to double the height of a barrier marking the border between Morocco and the Spanish enclave in order to reduce migrant attempts to scale it. The two-meter-high metallic fence will be raised by an additional two meters along the 590 meters of the border zone where 90 percent of migrants attempt to scale it, Melilla port authority chief Miguel Marin said.
An ''unbreakable'' fence
The new metallic fence, which will measure a total of 2,362 square meters, ''will make it practically impossible to break'' or ''create holes in to get into Spanish territory',' Marin was quoted by Spanish media as saying. The 541,309-euros tender for the contract to build it is expected to be published in the European Union's official bulletin on Monday. The tender was called by the Melilla port authority, which has stipulated that the fence must be built within a six-month period.
Migrant flows towards Spain rising in 2017
The Spanish interior ministry has said that the Spanish route has once again become one of the main entrances to Europe. The landings have increased the most since the beginning of the year.
Over 5,700 people were rescued from 258 boats - a rise of 50 percent compared to the same period in 2016. The International Organization for Migration's (IOM) data says that the Spanish route used by migrants to enter Europe is the one witnessing the biggest rise in numbers since the beginning of the year.
The number is still, however, far below that of those who landed in Italy, where 49,210 refugees arrived in the first six months of 2016 compared to 61,234 the same period in 2017.