Irregular maritime migration and managing arrivals in the Canary Islands
Vicente Manuel Zapata Hernández
The Canary Islands are witnessing a new cycle of intense migratory influx by sea, coinciding in time with the progression of the current coronavirus pandemic. Irregular arrivals have increased, and, after a decade of low arrivals through this Atlantic route,
the archipelago’s reception system was initially insufficient and highly debilitated. This system now takes on renewed prominence as the always perilous crossings bring with them a more diverse range of vulnerable migrants. The institutional response has
had to deal with greater complexity, conditioning the constant urgency to adopt incomplete and inappropriate solutions in certain cases, according to many of the evaluations carried out. The migratory process continues its course and more and more voices are demanding that a suitable reception strategy be defined, one based on a model that also integrates the principles of interculturality and is built with input from all the stakeholders involved.