Number of boat refugees in Spain rises slightly
Monsters & Critics News
Aug 22, 2007, 12:07 GMT
Madrid – The influx of African refugees on Spain's coasts has increased slightly, the daily El Pais reported Wednesday.
Since the past weekend more than 400 Africans reached the Canaries and the Iberian peninsula by boat, the paper said.
But the Spanish government showed no special concern about the latest report, with Consuelo Rumi, minister of state in charge of immigration issues, saying that the rise in the refugee numbers was only a temporary phenomenon.
The rise could not obscure the fact that the influx so far was in no way comparable with the surge in illegal immigrants last year, Rumi added.
In August 2006, over 7,000 immigrants were registered on the Canaries alone, compared with 473 so far in August this year.
In total the number of refugees in the first seven months of this year had declined by 55 per cent from the same period of 2006.
2007 dpa – Deutsche Presse-Agentur