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Marlaska defends his immigration management despite the sentences and calls for reform of the 'gag law'

It is disgusting that PP and Vox launch messages of "hate" about immigration: "There is no correlation with the increase in crime".

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Marlaska defends his immigration management despite the sentences and calls for reform of the 'gag law'

It is disgusting that PP and Vox launch messages of "hate" about immigration: "There is no correlation with the increase in crime"

MADRID, 23 Ene. (EUROPA PRESS) -

The Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, defended this Tuesday in Congress his immigration management within a "human security" policy that he said he will maintain in the coming years, calling on the Government's parliamentary partners to resume the reform. of the Citizen Security Law, known by its detractors as the 'gag law', after the negotiation failed in the previous legislature.

Specifically, Grande-Marlaska has appealed to the "will for consensus" to reform the 'gag law' that the PP approved in 2015. "We must find a space of agreement to reform those aspects that limit freedom of expression and assembly, also guaranteeing the functions carried out by the Security Forces and Bodies," he said, underlining the need for dialogue on other matters, including the application of the new European Pact on Migration and Asylum.

The appearance to explain the general lines of his Ministry has coincided with the ruling this Monday by the Supreme Court (TS) confirming that the return of Moroccan migrant minors from Ceuta in 2021 was illegal. In statements to the press, Grande-Marlaska has shown his respect, but has insisted that he acted in the "best interests of the minor."

In his initial intervention before the Interior Commission, Grande-Marlaska explained his "positive vision of migration as a source of opportunities", for which he asked PP and Vox - citing the former president of the Community of Madrid, Isabel Díaz Ayuso, for her statements about the migrants from Alcalá de Henares-- "not sending messages of fear and hate."

"There is no correlation between an increase in crime rates with an increase in irregular immigration," stressed the head of the Interior, who has recognized that 2023 closed with an 82% increase in irregular arrivals of migrants to Spain.

"The data is there, we are not going to hide it," he said, although opening the focus to the situation in Europe: 55,000 migrants arrived on the Spanish coasts, especially the Canary Islands, but 160,000 migrants arrived in Italy.

Grande-Marlaska has alluded to the "structural pressure in Africa due to socio-economic factors" to explain this increase in the arrival of irregular migrants, but has clarified that the figure for 2023 is lower than in 2018 - its first year. in Interior--, since then the year closed with 57,500 migrants on the Spanish coasts, with 6,800 arriving through the land border of Ceuta and Melilla, compared to 1,230 in 2023.

He has also defended the international protection policy of the Ministry through the Office of Asylum and Refuge (OAR). Last Friday, in Rabat, the minister admitted "fraudulent" use with the asylum requests of travelers arriving at the Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas airport from Morocco and a judge in Madrid has just annulled the transfer of these migrants to the Internment of Foreigners (CIE) of Aluche, understanding that the asylum law is not respected.

Grande-Marlaska, who has relied on data from the CIS barometer from last January to remember that opinion on insecurity has improved "considerably" since Pedro Sánchez governed. "Today we are a safer and more resilient country," he maintained in a speech in which he acknowledged that his work in the Interior "is not easy," but so far he leaves a positive balance that he wants to extend over the next four years.

Although it has recognized that conventional crime stands at 1.9% in the third quarter of 2023 - the latest published balance, which included an increase in rapes of 12% and attempted homicides of 20% -, The minister said that the official statistics "reflect a slowdown in the upward trend with which the year began." Furthermore, he has repeated that it is scams and cybercrimes that are increasing most strongly, hence the Interior's plans to address this problem.

In his speech summarizing and challenges of the current legislature, after almost six years in the Ministry of the Interior, Grande-Marlaska has mentioned the implementation of the plan against gangs and violent youth groups. The minister has announced that new plans against youth crime will be implemented, as well as others on the prevention of sexual violence.

The head of the Interior recalled that terrorism, especially of a jihadist nature, continues to be one of the great challenges. The objective is to approve the new National Strategy Against Terrorism in 2024, with a period of validity of five years, as well as to maintain the commitment to the "public memory" of the victims of terrorism, citing the increase in subsidies or the commitment to Vitoria Memorial Center.

Grande-Marlaska has defended what he has described as an "effective security policy" at a time when, due to the Government's pacts with pro-independence parties, criticism and misgivings from unions of the National Police and the Civil Guard have increased due to the concessions in immigration policies and the possible loss of powers of the State Security Forces and Bodies.

The minister recalled the 38% salary increase in the salaries of police and civil guards, as well as the plan to improve infrastructure and the increase in staff - which has been extended to Penitentiary Institutions -. He has also said that it will be a priority to study improvements in retirement conditions.

At the level of improving coordination, he recalled that in 2018 the Mossos d'Esquadra and the Ertzaintza joined the Intelligence Center against Terrorism and Organized Crime (CITCO), as well as the transfer of penitentiary powers to the Basque Country. --something questioned by victims' associations due to the third degrees in favor of ETA prisoners-- or that of Traffic to Navarra, criticized internally by Civil Guard associations.

In this effort to increase coordination and cooperation mechanisms with the Autonomous Communities and Local Entities, Grande-Marlaska has announced that his forecast is that in the coming months the Police and Civil Guard will be integrated into the 112 Coordination Center of Catalonia and also in Navarra.

Among the novelties for the current legislature, Grande-Marlaska has indicated that his intention is to have "shortly" the new "absolutely digital DNI, a national document - already announced by the National Police - that will have "all its capabilities" from the mobile phone of each citizen.