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Fake birth, plane lands in Spain, migrants flee

BARCELONA –

The Spanish government said about 28 migrants fled a plane that made an emergency landing in Barcelona on Wednesday when a fake pregnant woman was about to go into labor during a flight from Morocco to Turkey, before the police rounded up half of them.

The government said that after landing at El Prat airport, the woman was checked at a hospital and found she was not in labor.

The Turkish government said police had arrested 14 people on board the plane operated by Turkish airline Pegasus Airlines, while 14 others were still missing.

It said five people had been brought back to the plane and eight others would be deported to Morocco. It does not provide detailed information on all migrants.

The plane had a total of 228 passengers on board from Casablanca to Istanbul, where it landed at 13:10 local time (10:10 GMT) after more than three hours of delays, according to Flightradar.com.

Just over a year ago, a group of passengers from Casablanca to Istanbul evaded their plane on the tarmac in the Spanish island of Mallorca after making an emergency landing under the pretense and 12 of them were arrested. , while 12 others escaped.

Illegal migration, often by boat or across the land border between Morocco and the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla on the north coast of Africa, is one of the points of contention in Western relations. Spanish-Moroccan in the past decades.


(Reporting by Joan Faus, Inti Landauro; Editing by Andrei Khalip and Arun Koyyur)



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