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King Felipe receives call from Spain’s Prime Minister as crisis in Ceuta grows

Felipe VI of Spain

King Felipe of Spain has spoken by phone with Spanish Prime Minister, Pedro Sanchez, as military deployment are sent to the Spanish enclave of Ceuta after thousands of migrants from Morocco swam on to its beaches at the start of the week. The influx has resulted in a diplomatic crisis between the two kingdoms of Spain and Morocco as Spain now claims that Morocco is not doing enough to keep migrants away from the Spanish enclave on its side of the border.

King Felipe has also been talking to the president of Ceuta to convey his solidarity. Since the early hours of Monday, around 8.000 immigrants have entered Spanish territory at Ceuta. Of these, about 1,500 are minors. The majority of the 8.000 immigrants will be returned to Morocco.

Following the phone call between the King and Prime Minister the Spanish newspaper “El Mundo” is now reporting that King Felipe is now waiting for instructions to mediate in the new crisis between the two countries. The pro monarchist paper says King Felipe could become an important asset in interceding and trying to resolve the conflict, which began when Morocco discovered that Spain had allowed the Polisario Front leader to enter a Spanish hospital at the end of April for humanitarian reasons. Seventy three year old, Brahim Gali is the founder the liberation movement for the Sahrawi people that is outlawed in the parts of Western Sahara under Moroccan control. He was admitted under a false name to a hospital in the Spanish city of Logroño. This move angered Morocco

There is now debate about whether King Felipe VI will use his diplomatic capacity and speak directly with King Mohamed VI of Morocco to try to soften the tension. This is what the King did in April 2020. Then King Felipe contacted his counterpart ten days after Morocco unilaterally approved the expansion of its territorial waters by 200 miles. That was the last time that King Felipe spoke with King Mohamed VI. The diplomatic ties between the royal families of Spain and Morocco is not something new. King Juan Carlos of Spain often had diplomatic conversations with both King Hasan II and later with King Mohamed VI of Morocco.

About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written six books on historical subjects and more than 1.500 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.