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Last Updated: Monday, 31 July 2006, 09:17 GMT 10:17 UK
Tenerife tourists help migrants
Tourist gives water to migrant on La Tejita beach, 30 July 06
The migrants survived a dangerous voyage on a rickety boat
Tourists on a beach in Tenerife have come to the aid of 88 exhausted African migrants - among 205 who reached the Canary Islands on three open boats.

The sunbathers helped them with whatever they could provide until police and Red Cross workers arrived.

Some tourists drove their off-road vehicles onto La Tejita beach to help migrants who were too weak to walk.

More than 11,000 Africans have made the risky voyage to the Canaries this year - double the 2005 total, Spain says.

The influx has put enormous strain on the Canaries coastguards, police and rescue workers.

Guardia Civil craft escorts migrant boat, 30 July 06
Boats packed with migrants reach the Canaries almost daily
Eight of the migrants who arrived at La Tejita on Sunday were taken to hospital suffering from hypothermia and dehydration, the Red Cross said.

Last week four Africans were found dead in a small open boat packed with migrants, intercepted off the Canary Islands.

The European Union plans to launch maritime patrols around the Canaries and along the West African coast to help limit the flow of migrants.

Your comments:

These people are simply looking for the same opportunities we take for granted in the First World. Assisting in the development of their societies must not be an option but a responsibility we must assume. Humans everywhere have a right to a decent life.
Eduardo Garza Cervera, Chicago,USA

I was walking on my local beach in Gran Canaria a few months back and witnessed the arrival of a wooden rowing boat with 26 of these unfortunate young, emaciated men and women alike. As long as fortress Europe and the World Trade Organization stick its head in the sand and ignores Africa-it will continue.
John McDermott, Gran Canaria

I live on this beach. This is a weekly occurrence on this and the neighbouring beaches. Brussels and Europe as a whole need to address the humanitarian horror today. Get to the root of the problem and help these countries.
Simon, Tenerife

I often visit the Canary Islands and by the end of the year I will have made four trips there this year. As a legitimate visitor who pays his way into the Islands' economy I hope these people will be sent back as soon as possible.

This is a difficult drama to solve because the real reason for this influx of people is the difference of wealth. Spain needs help from European Union because it's so difficult to control our borders.
José Montero, Castellón (Spain)

The Canaries must tighten up their border controls, otherwise the whole of Europe will be flooded with African migrants, who will come in without medical checks, background checks, putting a huge burden and threat to citizens from that country.
Richard Browne, Exeter, England

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