A window into the lives of young Moroccan migrants stuck in…

A window into the lives of young Moroccan migrants stuck in…

This political angle came about because the boys were holding Arraigo Social status. Having traveled to Spain on illegal ships through the Strait of Gibraltar, the boys could apply for legal residence in the country without a visa, spending three years there without leaving.

Beltrán developed the project over the next few years, and the photographs are now featured in his recently published monograph. dialect. From lying awake in their bedrooms on bunk beds to freshly cutting each other’s hair and exchanging small loaves of bread, the photographs are a visual window into the slow, dead time for boys stuck in bureaucratic limbo.

In addition to learning Spanish, the boys also listened to and expressed themselves through music to try to integrate into the local culture and with those around them. “They tell their stories and desires through music,” says Beltrán. “Especially through a trap — it connects them to other people and starts to generate a community. An example of this is the artist Morad. [who is from a Moroccan background]who has been an inspiration to many of them.”

Their history, although a special case, is hardly unique. Frontex statistics report 330,000 illegal EU border crossings in 2022, the highest number since 2016. The pictures give a glimpse of the challenges faced by migrants in Spain, Europe and beyond, especially those arriving by illegal routes who often face mountains of bureaucracy and bureaucracy before they are allowed to become legal citizens. Sometimes their obstacles are even greater. In the UK, migrants face the prospect of deportation to Rwanda.

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