Migrants found hiding in glove box and under back seats of a car in bid to enter Europe3 min read

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Fits like a glove (box)! Migrants are found hiding behind the dashboard and under the back seats of a car in a bid to enter Europe from North Africa

  • Two teenage migrants found trying to cross into Spanish enclave of Mellila
  •  Both migrants were from Guinea and had to be cut out of the vehicle
  • The 30-year-old Moroccan driver of the vehicle was arrested for trafficking

Two teenage migrants have been discovered by Spanish authorities hiding inside the dashboard and under the back seats of a car as they tried to smuggle themselves across the border from Morocco.  

The migrants’ daring attempt to enter Melilla, a Spanish enclave in north Africa that borders Morocco, was foiled by Spain’s Guardia Civil on Thursday at the Beni-Enzar crossing.

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The two teenagers, aged 19 and 17, are both from the Sub-Saharan African nation of Guinea the one released on the dashboard is a minor, a 17-year-old male, while the one located in the hollow of the rear seats is a 19-year-old male . 

Police officers stopped the car during a routine security check, and after detecting physical anomalies in the vehicle, they decided to inspect the vehicle further before finding the men hiding in hidden compartments in the vehicle.

A 17-year-old migrant was found hiding in the glove compartment of a vehicle trying to cross into the Spanish enclave of Mellila

A 17-year-old migrant was found hiding in the glove compartment of a vehicle trying to cross into the Spanish enclave of Mellila

A 19-year-old man from Guinea was found lying underneath the seat of the vehicle.

A 19-year-old man from Guinea was found lying underneath the seat of the vehicle.

The police used a device to locate people hiding in the vehicle known as a ‘heartbeat detection machine’, before deciding to carry out a thorough search of the vehicle following the discovery of heartbeats coming from inside the vehicle.

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After a thorough search of the interior, a 17-year-old was located was lying across the entire interior of the dashboard. 

Continuing their search, the police found a second 19-year-old migrant, lying flat underneath the rear seats.  

Both men were so tightly packed into their hiding spaces that the police had to cut parts of the vehicle to release them. 

The 17-year-old had to be cut out of the glove compartment by Spanish border authorities

The 17-year-old had to be cut out of the glove compartment by Spanish border authorities

The two migrants were so tightly crammed into their hiding places that police had to damage the vehicle to remove them safely.

The two migrants were so tightly crammed into their hiding places that police had to damage the vehicle to remove them safely.

The two men were given medical attention at the scene after they were found to be suffering from dehydration and numbness, and had been exposed to vehicle emissions in the spaces that they were hiding in. 

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Neither of the teenage migrants was in a serious enough condition to be referred for further treatment. 

Spanish police reported that the migrants have been transferred to migrant detention facilities within the Spanish enclave. 

The driver of the vehicle was reported to be a 30-year-old male of Moroccan nationality, who was arrested on suspicion of people trafficking. 

Melilla has been a hotspot for migrant border crossings as it is one of the only EU territories that shares a land border with the African continent, with the other being the Spanish enclave of Ceuta, also bordering Morocco.

Migrants are forbidden from boarding ferries that travel from the Spanish enclaves in Africa to mainland Europe, in a policy that has been condemned by the European Commission’s special representative for migration. 

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