Spain: hundreds African illegal emigrants arrested by police

Hundreds of people trying to emigrate illegally to Spain by boat from Africa were intercepted over a 24-hour period, authorities said Tuesday. Two bodies were recovered, police said.

One boat was intercepted off the coast of Almeria in the south with 50 people and the two bodies on board, a police spokesman said. The coast guard was deployed Tuesday morning to intercept a boat off the Canary island of Fuerteventura, the news agency ACN News said. Forty people were on that vessel, the report said.

Earlier, two small boats were stopped off the coast of Granada in the south, one with 31 people sheltering under sheets of plastic and another with 33 people who were trying to land near the port of Salobrena, El Mundo newspaper reported.

Every year, thousands of people, mostly Moroccans and sub-Saharan Africans, try to emigrate illegally to Europe by crossing the sea to Spain on rickety boats, the AP reports.

Many drown in the attempt. Among those who make it across, most are detained and deported. A.M.

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