Africans Flown Home
Updated: 09:46, Saturday September 16, 2006
Spain has started sending home thousands of Africans who tried to use the Canary Islands as a stepping-stone to Europe.
The forced repatriations are a sign of hardening attitudes by the Spanish, and other European countries, towards illegal immigration.
More than 24,000 migrants, mostly from Africa, have been caught trying to reach the Canaries this year after sailing from west Africa in crowded open boats.
As planes start flying illegal immigrants back from Spain, families in Senegal wait nervously to see if their relatives are among those whose bid for a new life in "fortress Europe" has been thwarted.
Thousands of exhausted Africans, around half from Senegal, have come ashore in flimsy wooden boats in Spain's Canary Islands this year.
Their skin is parched by salt and sun after perilous sea crossings often lasting more than a week.
Three charter flights from the Canaries took around 200 migrants, escorted by Spanish police, to the northern Senegalese city of Saint-Louis on Friday.
Around 50 others arrived late on Thursday, when a controversial repatriation programme resumed.
If Spain can repatriate them back from whence they came, then so can we. Scrap the voluntary repatriation nonsense in the BNP that Nick Griffin brought in . JT allowed the policy on a temporary basis.
ARRIBA ESPANA !