Intense illegal migrants flows to Spain

Almost 400 migrants have been rescued in the Mediterranean this weekend as they attempted to make the crossing from Morocco to Spain, Spanish rescue services confirmed.

Spain faces a steady increase in sea arrivals which surged in recent months, especially after Italy started to close its ports for illegals.

On Saturday all together 395 people were rescued from nine boats in the Strait of Gibraltar and the Alboran Sea, the two major sea crossings to Spain, the Spanish coastguard official said.

Two more people were rescued from a small boat on Sunday, they added.

Spain, which for the first time in years has overtaken Italy as the preferred destination for refugees, has registered almost 21,000 migrants so far this year, almost more than in the whole of last year, according to figures compiled by the International Organisation for Migration.

The mortality rate for the crossing from Morocco is around one in 70, the IOM said, which is considerably lower than that between Libya and Italy, which is one in 19.

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