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Following the death of at least 37 people seeking international protection at the Spain-Morocco border on 24 June, the Left called for an urgent debate at the July plenary of the European Parliament. 

European Commissioner for Home Affairs, Ylva Johansson attended on behalf of the Commission and, as is often the case for debates concerning human rights of migrants, the Council was not present. 

During the debate Left MEPs Sira Rego (Izquierda Unida, Spain), Miguel Urban Crespo (Anticapitalistas, Spain) and Pernando Barena (EH Bildu, Basque Country) called for a thorough and independent investigation of the facts and demanded accountability at all levels. 

Left MEPs called out racist migration policies and the emergence of a two-tier system for the treatment of refugees. The EU’s welcome to Ukrainian refugees shows the art of the possible – those fleeing war can be received and integrated into European society. 

The same should apply to the EU’s southern borders. African lives are no less important than European lives. 

Instead, refugees trying to reach safety are confronted with walls, fences and violence to prevent people from reaching the EU. There is not a single point along the border with Morocco where people can ask for asylum. . 

The blatant disregard for human life at the EU’s external borders must end. Seeking asylum is a fundamental right. The EU’s migration policy must be based on reception, human rights and guaranteeing safe and legal routes to the EU, to ensure that these incidents never happen again.

To watch the debate in full, see here

 

Image: No Border Network

 

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