Cayuco with 195 on board arrives under own steam at Los Cristianos

Photo: Puertos de Tenerife.

A cayuco with 195 on board has arrived this morning at Los Cristianos. Emergency services and the Ports Authorities say that among the adult male occupants there was a baby and at least 15 children. The craft reached the harbour under its own steam while other craft have meanwhile been arriving at other islands in the archipelago through the morning. There is no clear information as yet as to their state of health but no reports of any urgent treatment needed.

They will all be dealt with according to official procedures to ascertain their origin and any asylum claims, but the picture is increasingly one of intense pressure and the occupants of these craft now appear to have started being accommodated in apartment complexes in south Tenerife while they are being processed. From unconfirmed reports, it appears that Granada Park in Los Cristianos is one such community where there is increasing tension between residents and immigrants.

It has been acknowledged for some time that these desperate people are housed in hotels in Santa Cruz, the Pelinor in the Plaza de Candelaria is one such, and now it seems that the numbers are such that the occupants of the craft arriving in the south are housed here for lack of space in the north or metropolitan area. As public unease increases, however, the authorities are at pains to stress that the new arrivals are not there “on holiday”, and that they aren’t able to use facilities that guests use. This is perhaps similar to placing benefits claimants in B&B in the UK, now widely accepted as anything but a holiday for those in need.


  1. This subject is turning out to be one big opportunity of having a snipe at others where opinion differs from one’s own.

  2. Mary
    To suggest there is no respect or tolerance in the UK is an appalling thing to say notably because we are taking more immigrants crossing the Channel than arriving in Tenerife
    Any country with a far greater population than Tenerife will have a greater share of intolerant people
    Every country however big or small should do their best, within their resources, to help genuine immigrants who have been made homeless, many for not fault of their own
    Sniping at another country is petty and childish when we should be concentrating on the many issues affecting the island

  3. Absolutely Mary – very well said. I agree with every word. It’s the kindness and generosity of the people here that make these islands so special. As you say – long may it continue.

  4. The cause needs to be treated not the disease but unfortunately there is no easy answer to how that treatment can be successfully implemented.

  5. Very well said Janet. Some appalling racism in some of these recent comments. “Don’t want to come to Tenerife if it is becoming like some UK cities? ” Well just don’t then, as you just wouldn’t fit in here, even as a tourist. One of the main differences between life here in Tenerife and that in the UK is that here we have respect and tolerance, and there is no sense of exaggerated nationalism, or of superiority. There are people of many nationalities living harmoniously together on this island and all are welcomed, which is how it should be. The Canarians are welcoming to all those who choose to come here and settle from all parts of the world, and the result is a a multicultural and diverse society, where we live in peace with our neighbours no matter where they are from. Long may that continue.

  6. I share your scepticism James about how far some of these boats are actually travelling. I was at Los Christianos port today and saw the tiny boat and its 19 occupants. I would be astonished if that tiny boat had sailed under its own steam all the way from Africa. It had a tiny hp engine on it. I have photos. A local told me today that he has heard that the migrants are paying 3000 euros for the trip. Its a serious commercial business in my opinion.

  7. Agree on last 2 comments, up to a point, I cannot get my head around this years huge amount of (mostly) successful trips, but from where? it begs the question of how far they are really travelling, are they being dropped off from not so far away? the operation of the people smugglers seems to have improved somewhat, how? why? are the plights really as desperate now? They have money to pay the smugglers? Is any information being obtained from the refugees about the smugglers? If yes, why is it still in such high operation? if not, why not? sorry guys, like many, I accept there is so much hardships in this world that is just not fair nor right and governments should be ashamed and held responsible for many of these man made plights, however, as i said, the current situation of so many arrivals, especially being in good condition (remembering the near death arrivals over the years, which was indeed sad) something just doesn’t seem right in the current situation of arrivals, just my opinion guys, freedom of speech an all that. No offense to anyone intended.

    1. Author

      The EU has managed to shut off the Lampedusa route, and Italy has created quite a fuss about its undue share. Land routes have been closed down and Greece is a disaster area as an entry point to Europe. The “Canaries route” was in operation back in 2006 and it was many times greater in numbers than this year so far! … and then it was shut off and the Lampedusa route took off. Now we’re back here.

      This is a tide of humanity, and no amount of parochial racism alters the fact that a huge wave of desperation is seeking its fair share of planetary wealth. It’s natural to try to shut it out and preserve the status quo but what we see as inequaity – the difference between all of us on this wesbsite and the billionaires who own half of London or have their hands in powerful pockets – is nothing compared to the inequality as perceived by those for whom one square meal a month is a luxury and for whom we might as well be princes.

      The money to pay the smugglers is often a “loan”. Many times families in homelands are held to ransom. It’s like any number of sales pitches we will be familiar with ourselves … you can’t afford it, no problem, when we get them there they’ll send you money back and you can repay us then … at 7000% interest. And often, those in the boats have been promised work, like some who went to the Americas many decades ago, but who found themselves enslaved … their debt being a physical one. So yes their plight really is desperate.

      And as I say, this year has far fewer arrivals than we actually had when the route was open back in 2006. Maybe it will get that busy again. And the fact is that the Tenerife arrivals often don’t include fatalities, though that’s not unknown. Other craft, which I sometimes report on but not always, arrive with no living souls in them at all, or with a handful at death’s door. Some arrive with a third of those who started out … the missing occupants aren’t accounted for because they aren’t recoverable from the sea.

      In any case, we have an awakening coming, and whatever our concerns about which route that awakening is coming through, it’s coming all the same. In my opinion.

  8. There is only one thing that sets us apart from these desperate people; luck of birth.

  9. Almost without words reading some of these posts. Whatever has happened to kindness and empathy? We have so much and these people risk their lives on a boat of hope not for fun but for the possibility of a better life.

    How desperate would you have to be to risk such a voyage with practically only the clothes on your back.

  10. Thank you for your diplomatic response. It didn’t answer the direct question as to whether or not DNA and/or fingerprints are collected from people taking Covid tests.. It is no secret in the UK this is being done, as per the legislation. Spain/Canary Islands should make it known also if there is legislation in place.

    1. Author

      They don’t have to make it known because it is already known and so I thought it was obvious, to be honest. They do take fingerprints and there is a database of them. Have a look at EURODAC legislation HERE, it has been in place for seven years and in operation throughout the EU. I understand the UK is going to lose access to the database though, from the end of this year when the Transition Period ends, or at least it seems to be at risk of losing the access. I also understand that DNA testing is carried out throughout the EU, though DNA sampling is not without controversy.

  11. I would like to know if the Canaries have the same legislation as the UK. When Covid tests are taken, the person’s DNA and/or fingerprints are also taken – for control of Covid … Are the illegal immigrants subject to the same control if over 8,000 of them have arrived so far? It makes sense. The UK Legislation is 2020 973 if anyone wants to search it.

    1. Author

      Spain has its own legislation, in line with EU directives. This is a global problem, with international accords in place. Spain abides by them, fully, as do most countries.

  12. I am sure all tinerfeños would be happy to avoid the island looking like UK major towns. So they can’t be happy seeing an airplane with 190 foreigners on board landing at their airport, especially from outside the EU and from a country with a huge covid problem. The government does indeed need to sort this out and restrict access at least to those who can spell the name of the island correctly.

  13. I wont be holidaying in tenerufe anymore.
    It wont be long until it look like all the UK major towns and cities.
    I feel sorry for the tenerians with it being such a small island.
    Why can’t we help people live safely in their own countries instead of just dumping them in ours and dragging it down and draining our welfare system.

  14. Myself & my wife Holliday in Tenerife 3/4 Times a year, and have done for the last 11 years, where booked to go this month, we stay in the south if we see any changes for the worst, we will not be returning, the government needs to sort this out, Quickly,

  15. We were going to book a break in the Canaries but won’t be doing so now.

  16. The irony is palpable – does Tenerife want visitors from high-risk areas? Certainly not. They should stay away and not infect the island. We want decent intelligent visitors from safe places, not illiterate racists.

  17. British won’t come to tenerife if those boat people are there.its bad enough in uk.but we don’t want them in tenerife.lucky lucky men are ok.but these people mostly men.not families.lots will have one will feel safe with these people here in cristianos.the owners are going nuts about this.government must get rid of them now.or xmas will be gone also with no one there.

  18. The last ones were put up in hotels are they going to get fed & will they be set free on 31st of December

    1. Author

      They are not “imprisoned” so there is no question of their being “set free”. They are being processed as asylum seekers. Those who have their request approved are allowed to move freely while the rest of their paperwork is processed, those who are deemed to have no reason for seeking asylum are returned. They are given basic necessities like food like any refugees are, until they are determined either not to be refugees or are able to work to earn. This is basic humanity, and basic international law.


  20. We are also owers at that complex, a residential complex with tourist exploitation. We only have a problem with the comunidad president and administration because they changed the exploitation without previous agreement of owners. The migrants are all male, they have been placed with 4 migrants in a 1 bedroom apartment an 6 migrants in a 2 bedroom apartment. Some owers are women who stay here alone and they are surounded by male migrants, looking all day on their terrace, ringing on the door late at night… and 8 days after the first group were placed here, we stll have not received any information or comunication.

  21. This is absolutely true. We own an apartment on the complex in question. None of the residents knew that this was going to happen. There are about 100 migrants there at the moment, bring looked after by Cruz Roja and with only 2 security guards to monitor them.
    They are expected to be there until 31.12.20

  22. I holiday in Tenerife several time a year but will not be going back if they continue to house illegals

  23. There was a post on Facebook claiming the migrants had been placed in apartments in Cristianos without the permission of the owners. Nothing to substantiate this claim, of course but it had the (presumably intended) affect of stirring ups some ill feeling against the migrants and the government. Oh dear

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