The Government is studying abolishing the special regime of Ceuta and Melilla and requiring a visa to enter

The Government is studying the possibility of abolish the special regime of Ceuta and Melilla and include the autonomous cities in the Schengen area and the EU customs union, with which border control in both cities would be on the border with Morocco and a visa would be required to enter.

A) Yes It has been assured by the Secretary of State for the European Union, Juan González-Barba, speaking after holding a meeting with the president of Ceuta, Juan Jesús Vivas.

The special regime for autonomous cities was established in 1986 when Spain became part of the Schengen area and assumes that residents of Tetouan can access Ceuta without a visa and those of the province of Nador to Melilla, and that customs controls are carried out at the port.

It is a measure that the Government of Ceuta had already raised, at the beginning of last year 2020, for the convenience of reviewing the current exception to the Schengen Treaty in order to reduce migratory pressure and its impact on certain services and areas.

This step would also achieve improve efficiency in containing such immigration and ensure that it is the Spanish authorities and not the Moroccans who decide who enters Ceuta.

González-Barba has visited Ceuta accompanied by the Secretary of State for Territorial Policy and Public Function, Víctor Francos, to inquire about the consequences of what happened on May 17 and 18, when thousands of irregular immigrants stormed from Morocco.

For Vivas, the visit of the two representatives of the central government means reiterating, once again, the “commitment, involvement and interest” to face the “unsustainable” situation that Ceuta is going through and that it requires, as the president has stated, “a decisive action under the keys of unity, institutional loyalty and responsibility.”

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Through a statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has stressed that the objective of the visit has been to reiterate the Government commitment to the autonomous city and “exploring the options offered by the European framework to promote post-pandemic local development”.

Thus, González-Barba has highlighted the availability of the Executive of “Collaborate with the maximum institutional loyalty” to ensure “preferential attention” to the city and seek a broad participation of Ceuta in European policies.

For his part, Francos has underlined the involvement of the Ministry of Territorial Policy in promoting the coordination of the actions of the General State Administration in the city, and a “specific reinforcement of a consultancy that is already working at the highest ministerial level to develop this important task ”.

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