The ombudsman, MPs who saw the footage, government partners and recent journalistic investigations contradict the official version of the tragedy in Melilla. Security camera videos contradict the Interior Ministry’s story, but Fernando Grande-Marlasca insists. Sticking to the usual argument, the minister repeated the same explanations in the Congress on June 24 during the first intervention on the border developments. After new evidence suggests that at least one person died on Spanish soil, Marlasca insists that “no tragic event” took place on Spanish territory, denying the alleged lack of health care provided by the Spanish authorities during the most dramatic moments of the war. trying to get in and defends his department’s “total and absolute transparency.”
“The same facts that I told you in the last appearance, and they are the same facts, simply because there is no other, no matter what bothers those who, with their biases and preconceived truths, want other truths. They want to build, but what doesn’t exist,” said the minister, who began his speech by emphasizing several times the alleged “violence” used by refugees trying to jump over the barbed wire fence.
In his first intervention, Grande-Marlasca insisted on placing the whole of the tragedy on Moroccan soil. “We did not regret any tragic incident in the territory of Spain. I said and I repeat: we are talking about tragic events that are happening outside our country. Human lives did not occur in the national territory,” emphasized the head of the interior, who reprimanded the Popular Party deputies for the investigation, which was published on Tuesday after Esteban González Ponce demanded the resignation of Grande-Marlasca for their “lies”. “About the deaths in Melilla.
“I want to make it clear that any assumption, speculation or insinuation, such as what I have heard or read, I apologize from some honorable members of the People’s Party and other groups, that the State Security Forces and the Corps, that the Civil Guard, in particular, he would allow For this type of tragic event to happen in our country, without doing anything, it is grossly irresponsible,” said Marlaska, whose portfolio included a 5-month long investigation by various Europeans. Media as “investigative journalism”. “Please understand that in light of these types of statements, in light of such serious allegations against the Civil Guard, I have them before me and the entire Ministry of Internal Affairs,” he added.
It is “irresponsible” for the minister to claim that health care was not being provided to migrants who needed it. “There were health groups, clearly protected, because there was a violent attack and it was impossible to access it without putting its members at risk, and this is evidenced not by my data, but by the health services,” he said. As he notes, 11 migrants were treated that day after jumping the fence in Melilla. In addition, the minister points to the care received by refugees who managed to enter and stay in Spanish territory and were cared for at a certain distance from the border perimeter; Complaints about the lack of medical care concern the most dramatic moments of the tragedy, when dozens of people found themselves on top of each other at the gate that connects Morocco to Spain.
After the Human Rights Commissioner of the Council of Europe verified, as various international organizations have already done, the impossibility of requesting asylum at the border points of Melilla, Marlasca expressed his indignation at this type of statement. “It is noted that the people who violently attacked our borders did so because they could not claim asylum and It is simply false and irresponsible to accuse our civil servants of these types of actions.”
The minister made the remarks in plenary hours after the publication of a new investigation by journalist consortium Lighthouse Reports, which found that at least one refugee died on Spanish soil during the June 24 events at the Melilla fence. The revelation, which adds to the excitement caused by the BBC documentary, refutes the thesis defended by Marlasca that “no tragic event” took place in Spain, but on the Moroccan side of the border. Official images and several videos of the events show that the avalanche that caused most of the deaths occurred on the Moroccan side of the border, right at the gate that divides Morocco from Spain, but several bodies were found on both sides of the barbed wire. A Moroccan agent and a witness note that at least one of them died, but the minister reiterated that the events “mainly took place” on the Moroccan side, without elaborating on the new information.
One of the videos analyzed in the investigation shows several bodies lying on the Spanish side of the border, behind the gate where the avalanche occurred. The images show a Moroccan agent dragging one of the people. Another gendarme comes to touch the pulse of one of the unconscious youths on the Spanish side and assures him that “he is dead”.
According to the testimony of one of the survivors of the tragedy collected in the work of Lighthouse Reports, the young man whose pulse was touched by the Moroccan agent was Abdul Aziz Yacoub and he is one of those who died in the tragedy. His body, apparently lifeless, was lying at the door of the border post on the Spanish side. Two different official sources confirm to a group of journalists that Spanish territory begins after passing through this door. Although interior sources initially claimed that it was a joint operational zone and that the area did not belong to Spain, the ministry now admits that it is Spanish territory, but insists that all the deaths occurred in Morocco.
The lack of medical aid in the most dramatic moments of tragedy on both sides of the fence, 470 forced returns, the entry of Moroccan agents to return to Spain and the beating of migrants who have already crossed the fence, the use of unrest. With the avalanche of people and the lack of legal channels to seek asylum in Ceuta and Melilla, there are several issues that Grande-Marlasca will face at one of her most difficult times.
Source: El Diario