Eight Iraqis saved from refrigerated truck in Spain

2017-03-11 17:47
In a similar incident earlier, migrants tried to get into a truck near Steenvoorde in northern France. (Philippe Huguen, AFP)

In a similar incident earlier, migrants tried to get into a truck near Steenvoorde in northern France. (Philippe Huguen, AFP)

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Madrid - Eight Iraqis, including four children, were found crammed inside a refrigerated truck in a service area in eastern Spain, police said on Saturday, adding that they had been trying to reach Britain.

The four adults and four children, aged two, five, eight and 10, were all in good health, said a police spokesperson.

"After we received an anonymous call, agents from the Spanish police opened the back of a refrigerated truck in a lay-by on the A23 motorway and found eight Iraqis inside, all in perfect health," police said.

None of the migrants carried identification, but police said they were able to determine that all were Iraqi nationals.

The occupants included one family of two adults and three children, another family of a woman with a two-year-old daughter and a man travelling alone.

It wasn't immediately clear how long they had spent inside the truck, but police said they were on their way to Britain when their truck was intercepted in the eastern province of Teruel.

Migration crisis

"We do not know yet how these Iraqi families came to be in Spain," police said.

The driver, a 37-year-old Romanian national, was arrested on charges of human trafficking.

According to Spanish media reports, a family coming from Iraq was found in a refrigerated truck on the same motorway and in the same province last month.

The decomposing bodies of 71 people were on August 27 found inside a truck at the side of an Austrian motorway in a discovery that sparked a horrified response across Europe as it struggles with its worst migration crisis since World War II.

Investigations revealed that the migrants - mostly from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan - had been picked up at Hungary's border with Serbia and transported to Austria via Budapest.

Read more on:    spain  |  iraq  |  migrants

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