08:21 GMT +321 September 2019
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    African migrants rest on board a Spanish rescue boat after arriving at Arguineguin port in the Canary Island Gran Canaria, Spain, July 13, 2015

    Spain Launching Operation to Tackle Migrant Problem in Canary Islands

    © REUTERS / Borja Suarez
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    Madrid is going to conduct the EPN-HERA 2015 operation that prevent undocumented immigrants from entering the European Union.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Spain’s Civil Guard is launching the EPN-HERA 2015 operation in response to a high number of undocumented immigrants trying to enter the Canary Islands, the country's Interior Ministry said in a statement Monday.

    According to the ministry, EPN-HERA 2015 will prevent undocumented immigrants from entering the European Union, save lives at sea, counter human trafficking networks and identify migrants pending repatriation.

    The operation will identify international organized criminal activities, drug trafficking, and channel this information to appropriate national and informational bodies for analysis and coordination.

    The ministry states that previous operations of EPN-HERA have been successful, with documented numbers of migrants rescued in the Atlantic dropping sharply.

    According to the ministry, as many as 40,000 migrants are currently in Morocco waiting to enter Europe.

    Europe is currently experiencing a migration crisis. Unprecedented numbers of undocumented immigrants from North Africa and the Middle East have attempted to cross the Mediterranean Sea to enter Europe this year. There have been thousands of attempts to enter the United Kingdom through the French port of Calais in recent weeks alone.

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    migrants, EPN-HERA 2015 operation, Spain's Civil Guard, Canary Islands, Spain
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