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Marlaska affirms that the end of OCON-Sur did not affect the fight against drug trafficking and the PP links it to pressure from Morocco

The minister attacks Feijóo for his photo with Marcial Dorado and remembers that he ordered his entry into prison, "where all drug traffickers should be".

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Marlaska affirms that the end of OCON-Sur did not affect the fight against drug trafficking and the PP links it to pressure from Morocco

The minister attacks Feijóo for his photo with Marcial Dorado and remembers that he ordered his entry into prison, "where all drug traffickers should be"

MADRID, 21 Feb. (EUROPA PRESS) -

The Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, defended this Wednesday in Congress that the end of the OCON-Sur Civil Guard unit in 2022 did not harm the fight against drug trafficking in Campo de Gibraltar, because later there were more arrests and seizures than previous years. PP and Vox have once again called for the resignation of the portfolio holder, linking the end of this unit to "pressure from Morocco" and the "manipulation" of evidence against his commanders.

As he did yesterday in the Senate, Grande-Marlaska has accused the PP of "using for partisan purposes" the Barbate tragedy that left two agents murdered and, in addition, has taken advantage of the fact that the president of the PP, Alberto Núñez Feijóo, was following the session control in the Lower House to remind him of his photo with the convicted drug trafficker Marcial Dorado.

"The difference between some who traveled by boat with drug traffickers is that this Minister of the Interior put him in prison, where all drug traffickers should be," he said, recalling his time as a judge at the National Court, where he handled this case. Galician smuggler and drug trafficker for whom he ordered his imprisonment.

The PP, which has in parallel promoted the disapproval in the Senate of the Minister of the Interior, has reiterated that Grande-Marlaska must resign due to what happened in Barbate in a battery of questions in the control session in which it has linked the dismantling of OCON -South to "pressure from Morocco" and to the Internal Affairs reports where evidence was "manipulated" against the commanders of this unit.

As he has been doing in recent days, Grande-Marlaska has asked for "respect" for the judicial investigation that affects an OCON-Sur commander who is accused of revealing secrets when trying to obtain information about the investigations. of Internal Affairs for his alleged contacts with a drug trafficking clan.

In addition, he has reiterated that the decision to end OCON-Sur in 2022 - the unit he created in 2018 when he arrived at the Ministry of the Interior - did not affect drug arrests and seizures, which he assures grew in 2023, and that what he did was assist the Civil Guard commanders to "restructure" the 150 agents of said unit and send them to the judicial police of the commands in the Campo de Gibraltar area.

"Nothing seems sufficient to me for our agents to work in the best conditions," continued Grande-Marlaska, indicating that on the same day of the Barbate tragedy he presented the fourth edition of the Campo de Gibraltar Special Security Plan with 1.2 billion in investments. .

Furthermore, he has stressed that in decisions such as the end of OCON-Sur or in operational matters, those who decide are the Civil Guard and National Police commanders. "They have the autonomy to do it and I respect and support it; not like you who imposed orders on them," the minister said, alluding to Mariano Rajoy's era and controversies such as the so-called 'Operation Catalonia' or the 'Kitchen case'.

The PP deputies Miguel Tellado, Elías Bendodo and Ana Belén Vázquez have censured Grande-Marlaska for "entrenching" himself in his position and not giving convincing explanations about the lack of means, which they consider was proven by using a zodiac in Barbate. "It is unacceptable that he continues without clarifying why he dissolved the OCON, if it is due to pressure from Morocco, if it is to save money or, worst of all, to manipulate evidence against them," they pointed out.

Vox's congressional spokesperson, Pepa Millán, has also attacked Grande-Marlaska for what happened in Barbate, focusing her criticism on him not declaring Campo de Gibraltar a Special Singularity Zone - which would entail economic benefits for the agents. - or for ordering the disappearance of OCON-Sur.

The minister's reply has focused on detailing the means in the Campo de Gibraltar. "We now have 3,700 more agents and 1,200 each month on secondment," he said, denying the loss of effectiveness since OCON-Sur did not exist.

When questioned by the Prosecutor's Office Report that denounced the drop in operations after OCON-Sur disappeared, Grande-Marlaska detailed the operations before and after in figures: in 2022 there were 4,698 operations and in 2023 they rose to 5,439; arrests went from 5,827 to 6,144; The means of transportation of drug traffickers seized were 1,505 in 2022 and 1,620 a year later; and the tons of drugs seized increased from 272 to 306 in 2023.

"What do I mean by this? That perhaps the operational decisions of the Civil Guard had meaning in the countryside of Gibraltar", concluded Grande-Marlaska.