Europe

Spain and Morocco to reopen land borders next week

Borders separating Spain’s African enclaves from Morocco closed since March 2020

Alyssa McMurtry   | 12.05.2022
Spain and Morocco to reopen land borders next week

OVIEDO, Spain 

The Spanish government announced on Thursday that the country’s land borders with Morocco will reopen from next week for the first time in more than two years.

The reopening will be gradual. From Tuesday, Moroccans with permission to enter the Schengen will be able to cross the border into Spain’s African enclaves, according to a statement from the Spanish government.

The Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla represent the only EU land borders with an African nation.

On May 31, legally recognized cross-border workers will also be allowed to travel freely between the two countries, still following COVID-19 protocols.

Within the opening, a Spanish-Moroccan workgroup will determine the next categories of people or merchandise that will be able to travel between Morocco and the Spanish enclaves.

“The reopening is the fruit of the work with Moroccan authorities and part of the framework that was agreed upon by Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and King Mohamed IV of Morocco,” said the statement.

Under the new framework, the Spanish government adopted Morocco’s vision for the future of Western Sahara, which claims it should be an autonomous region within Morocco.

In April, ferry traffic also resumed between Spain and Morocco for the first time in two years.

Meanwhile, Spain said the Interior Ministry will reinforce police presence in Ceuta and Melilla to “guarantee security needs.”

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