According to the UN migration agency, the number of migrants arriving in Spain by boat is increasing, and it has now overtaken Italy as the new top destination for Mediterranean crossings.
While the number of migrants has decreased to 50,872, less than half during the same time period last year particularly due to Salvini’s hard-line stance against illegal migration policy, the number of arrivals to Spain has risen sharply as well, to nearly the triple.
“As we have predicted for several weeks now, Spain has become the most active route of African migrants and people using Africa as a stepping stone into Europe,” United Nations Migration Agency spokesman Joel Millman said to reporters in Geneva.
Spain “surpassed Italy this past weekend,” he added.
While, 18,061 migrants have docked in Spain since January 2018, compared to 6,500 during the first half of 2017, with nearly 10,000 of those arrivals registered just for the month of June.
At the same time, arrivals in Italy sharply decreased from a total 17,827 since the beginning of the year compared to 93,237 during the same period last year.
The reversal of fortunes in the Mediterranean comes not only after Italy’s tougher policy on illegal migration but also Spain’s socialist government allowing the 1st docking of illegal migrants in the Southeastern port of Valencia, using it as a publicity stunt and triggering a calling effect into the country.