Spain Talks With Morocco After Immigration and Territorial

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Spain's Interior Minister visits Morocco in a bid to ease simmering tensions over the alleged abuse of Moroccans in a Spanish enclave. Morocco also blames Spain of deserting Moroccans in a Spanish n the Mediterranean Sea. Let's see more.

On Monday, Spanish Interior Minister Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba held talks with his Moroccan counterpart Taieb Cherqaoui in Rabat, after tensions between the two countries over immigration and disputed territories flared into a full-blown row.

Since mid-July, Morocco's government has issued five statements attacking what it says was the abuse of Moroccans in a Spanish enclave.

Morocco is also accusing Madrid of abandoning African migrants in the Mediterranean Sea.

Both issues have long been sore points, but the tone of the exchanges is reaching a new intensity.

A Moroccan journalist based in Madrid, says the Spanish visit was intended to diffuse the row that is straining ties crucial to European efforts in tackling terrorism and illegal migrants.

[Nabil Driouech, Moroccan journalist]: (Male, Arabic)
"The Spanish side is trying to use this visit to explain to the Moroccan authorities a list of topics Madrid says it is following closely; mainly the latest events after Morocco issued no less than five statements accusing the Spanish police of abusing Moroccan citizens at the borders. This visit is meant to turn this page and it is also a goodwill sign from Spain to say that Madrid is keen to safeguard its good relationships with Rabat."

Relations have since warmed, with Spain and other European states praising Rabat for fighting Islamist militants, cracking down on cannabis smuggling and stepping up surveillance to sharply cut illegal migrant arrivals to Spain.

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