In this operation, Morocco has violated many of its own laws, including the arrest of minors, the absence of individual case-by-case evaluation, or the detention of people over more than 24h without giving any reason. Yet, the Moroccan authorities try to maintain their human rights’ facade: the ministerial delegate Charki Draiss showed photos at a press conference of migrants being given food and being well cared-for. The government’s states that it doesn’t want to tolerate any more migrants’ camps near the EU borders. It is not difficult to guess who is behind this large-scale operation: it seems that the European Union has paid Morocco 10M Euros to conduct parts of the operation, especially a large-scale intervention of the Red Cross only few days before the deportations. In early February, the Red Cross generously handed out food to the Gurugu inhabitants, but they had to fill in a questionnaire. The migrants now believe that these questionnaire and the accompanying visits to the forest served to gather information about the number and nationalities of the Gurugu migrants. It seems evident that this whole operation is just another disdainful attempt to comply with the EU’s murderous border regime. Meanwhile, it is not clear yet whether the Moroccan government will extend the operation to other forest camps or migrant quarters in Northern Morocco. Police have been seen around other forests in the Nador area (e.g. Boringo), but up until now, the situation seems calm.
In Tangier, however, several dozen people have been arrested around a market area, they are now being held in the Miznana commissariat. Again, it is unsure whether this is part of a larger strategy or just random intimidation and harassment.
beatingborders in Update from the ongoing deportations of migrants from the externalized border of the European Union (Beatingborders)