African migrants including PREGNANT women and CHILDREN sob as they reach dry land in Spain | World | News



The three ships, carrying a total of 630 migrants, arrived the port of Valencia, after they were rescued from Libyan shores.

The first ship to reach was Italian coastguard vessel, Dattilo which arrived just before 7am on Sunday with 270 migrants on board.

The Dattilo was shortly followed by the Aquarius rescue ship holding 106 people and Italian navy boat Orione with the remaining 254.

The passengers comprised of 450 adult men and 80 women from 26 different countries – mainly Africans but also came from Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Pakistan, according to Medecins Sans Frontieres. 

Some 123 unaccompanied minors, 11 other children and seven pregnant women were also present on the boat, as they were greeted by emergency health workers and psychologists at the city’s marina this morning.
On Saturday, the three rescue boats were stuck off the coast of Sicily when Italian and Maltese officials refused to allow them to dock.

Spain volunteered to take the migrants in, saying that they will be examining each one case by case to see if they qualify for asylum under Spain’s guidelines.

The 630 migrants were greeted by over 2,000 people – including 1,000 Red Cross volunteers and 470 translators.

Numerous reporters were also stationed to cover the event, but no top government officials were expected.

A large banner saying “Welcome home” in various languages, including Catalan, the local language and Arabic, was set up at the port to greet the migrants upon their arrival.

The ships were forced to take detour due to treacherous waves and winds, further delaying the 930-mile journey to Spain.

On Saturday, Spain’s minister of public works, Miguel Angel Abalos said that the migrants would be granted “special authorisation”, allowing them to stay in Spain for a month before “they will be dealt with according to our laws without exception”.

Mr Abalos said Spain’s government “will act with sensitivity and at the same time within the law, and with a message to Europe that it doesn’t have an immigration policy up to the challenge at hand”.


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