A Spanish police officer deployed at the border to Morocco was attacked with a knife Tuesday by a man reportedly shouting “Allahu Akbar” (God is great).
The suspect was detained shortly after the attack as he ran into a border post in the Spanish territory of Melilla. Officers sustained minor injuries as they neutralized the attacker, according to Spain’s Interior Minister Juan Ignacio Zoido.
Jihadi violence is rare in Spain but the area has become one of the most popular entry points to the European Union for African migrants. Melilla and nearby Ceuta make up one of two land borders between the EU and Africa.
A 20-foot fence has been erected to keep migrants out, but several attempts to storm the border have been reported in recent years.
Authorities managed to stop an estimated 1,100 people from making it across the razor-wire barrier Jan. 1 in an “extremely violent and organized” way. Two migrants were hospitalized and 11 police officers were injured when 500 people successfully made it across the border Feb. 17 after violent clashes with police.
Those who do make it across are usually caught and sent back to Morocco.
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