Spain considers including Ceuta, Melilla fully in Schengen area


FILE PHOTO: Spain's Minister of Foreign Affairs Arancha Gonzalez Laya arrives to speak to the media outside the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Madrid, Spain, May 18, 2021. REUTERS/Juan Medina

MADRID (Reuters) - Spanish Foreign Minister Arancha Gonzalez Laya said on Tuesday her government is considering including Ceuta and Melilla, Spain's enclaves in North Africa, fully in Europe's passport-free Schengen area.

Currently, Moroccans from the towns surrounding the enclaves can enter without a visa, but need one to travel by sea or air into continental Spain or other Schengen member countries.

The move comes amid a row between Spain and Morocco over issues linked to Western Sahara, a region Morocco claims sovereignty over.

Gonzalez Laya declined to comment on the row, saying her ministry is working "under discretion."

(Reporting by Inti Landauro and Cristina Galan; Editing by Catherine Evans)

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