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Scandalous ‘hot return’ expulsions must not be legalised

Showing hard-hitting photographs of violence in the Spanish enclave of Melilla, Marina Albiol Guzman called out the hypocrisy of MEPs who claim to stand for human rights but ignore abuses on their doorsteps in today's debate on summary expulsions and the proposed legalisation of 'hot returns' in Spain.

The term “hot returns” is used to describe a situation when foreign citizens who have been intercepted by Spanish authorities (for example) are being handed over to the Moroccan authorities without any the legally established procedures being carried out.

“Hot returns, which the Spanish government wants to legalise, amounts to beating someone up and then sending them home. They are illegal deportations,” Albiol Guzman said, going on to list a whole series of Spanish and international laws and treaties breached by the practice including the Spanish constitution and criminal code, the European Convention on Human Rights, the Geneva Convention and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

“They are in many cases a death sentence against people who have nothing,” she concluded.

Teresa Rodriguez Rubio said that while the Violence faced by people, as documented by NGOs, is illegal – it has been going on for years.

“People are being thrown out like rubbish. The Spanish Government is well aware that these procedures are unlawful, and is therefore seeking to legalise ‘hot returns’. Does this parliament not worry about enforcing the law in place?” she asked. “If not then it is useless.”

Basque MEP Iosu Juaristi said “legalisation of these summary expulsions would be very dangerous.” He raised the many deaths caused by Spanish and Moroccan security services: “We're talking about people here, and you wouldn't think it given the immobility on the issue. The commission must take action!”

GUE/NGL Press:
David Lundy +32 470 85 05 09
Emily Macintosh +32 470 85 05 08
Gay Kavanagh +32 473 84 23 20