On Sunday, a Moroccan man suffocated to death while he attempted to smuggle himself into Spain in a suitcase. The man, 27, hid in the suitcase of his older brother, 34. The older man legally got on a ferry bound for Spain from North Africa.
When he realized his younger brother had stopped breathing, the 34-year-old notified the ferry staff. The crew and rescue workers attempted to revive the man, but to no avail. The older Moroccan is facing charges of involuntary manslaughter in Spain.
Some in the media have drawn parallels between this case and an incident earlier this summer. In May, border authorities found a young boy hiding in his father’s suitcase as he attempted to make his way into Spain from Morocco. The father attempted to smuggle the small boy into the country via suitcase because he was too poor to afford residency papers.
On Sunday, the Spanish interior ministry also announced that four migrants from Africa drowned attempting to swim around a fence onto the mainland. Thousands of migrants have been attempting to sneak into the European Union through Spain each year. Illegal immigration is increasingly becoming a problem for the EU as chaos and turmoil plague the Middle East and Africa.
Over 105,000 migrants have come to Europe since January—a record number that has officials very worried. Experts estimate that is a 149 percent increase from the same period last year.
The voyage from Africa to Europe is incredibly dangerous, and thousands die. The tunnel between France and England has, in particular, been a site of confrontation. Thousands of migrants are attempting to enter England through the tunnel entrance at the French port city of Calais. Eurotunnel, the authority which oversees the tunnel, has estimated at least 37,000 have attempted to cross into England through the tunnel.
In response, the French and British governments have stepped up security at checkpoints, adding 120 police officers to the force on the ground.
“There it is so difficult—in [Africa]—so they were saying to me come here to find humanity. We are coming here, we didn’t find any humanity here,” one migrant told a news service.