On Saturday, the Arab Parliament, the Arab League’s legislative body, called for the opening of the file of the cities of Ceuta and Melilla, which are located in the north of Morocco, and are under the administration of Spain. This came in an emergency session held by the Arab Parliament, in Cairo, in solidarity with Rabat against a European Parliament resolution accusing the North African country of “using” the file of immigrants against Madrid.
In a decision issued after the session, the Arab Parliament stressed “the need to open the file of the Moroccan cities of Ceuta and Melilla, and the occupied Moroccan islands (in the Mediterranean), to resolve this situation leftover from the colonial era.”
It is added, “We reject the unacceptable arrogant approach of the European Parliament in dealing with issues related to Arab countries, by issuing resolutions that contradict the requirements of the desired strategic partnership between Arab countries and European countries.”
On June 2, the European Parliament approved a resolution rejecting what it considered “Morocco’s use of immigrants in the migration crisis for the city of Ceuta”, which 397 deputies approved, 85 opposed, and 196 abstained.
According to the European Parliament, Morocco “used immigrants as a tool of political pressure” on Spain, after it recently “relaxed” border controls, which increased the number of migrants to Ceuta.
The Arab Parliament called on its European counterpart to “abandon provocative practices and adopt practical and responsible positions that enhance cooperation and joint coordination between Arab and European countries.”
It said, “A unified and integrated Arab action plan must be formulated to confront the irresponsible positions of the European Parliament, and in a manner that guarantees respect for the sovereignty of Arab countries and non-interference in their affairs.”
The relationship between Morocco and Spain is witnessing a crisis, against the background of Madrid hosting the leader of the “Polisario” Brahim Ghali, in late April, with a “fake passport”.
The crisis was further deepened by the influx of about 8,000 irregular migrants between May 17 and 20, to Ceuta.
The cities of Ceuta and Melilla, as well as the Aljaferia Islands and other rocky islands in the Mediterranean, are under the administration of Madrid, while Rabat considers the two cities and those islands “occupied outposts”.