POST BORDER FIELD TRIP DISORDER26 August 2016, Pepino
Yesterday, I came back - exhausted physically, emotionally and intellectually - from the Border Field Trip that took Serlachius Museum's director Pauli and me to the southern frontiers of Europe(an Union). In one week we crossed by foot borders between La Linea (ES) and Gibraltar (GB), Ceuta (ES) and Fnidaq (MA), Melilla (ES) and Nador (MA), and took a ferry from Tarifa (ES) to Tangier (MA).
A brief list of things we saw and experienced:
- A circus organized by an NGO outside of a Spanish immigrant reception center.
- Sub-Saharian immigrants hiding in Moroccan forests and coming to beg and prostitute themselves by a road.
- Moroccan military camps by the border and in forests were the migrants hide.
- A Spanish neighborhood controlled by drug lords and where the law enforcement forces rarely venture. Our fixer had to repeat constantly that we weren't cops. Finally we were received by an imam in a mosque.
- Moroccan police interrogating us why we visit non-tourist areas and wander by the border.
- Kilometers of both barbed wire and sophisticated triple separation fences strengthened with watch towers and all possible up-to-date vigilance technology.
- A Moroccan town purged of immigrants because the king was vacationing in his summer palace in the area.
- Spanish police interrogated us why we wanted to see the border structure and movement too close.
- A Moroccan police check-point next to hashish fields.
- Endless lines of people trying to cross borders.
- The last public statue of Generalissimo Francisco Franco.