MADRID — Demonstrators in Morocco briefly blockaded a Spanish enclave for hours Thursday, restricting trucks from making food deliveries in a dispute over alleged police violence and racism against Moroccans entering the city.
The protest came a day after the kings of the two traditional allies spoke by telephone to try to calm tempers in a conflict that has been simmering for three weeks.
Police said protesters at dawn prevented all trucks from entering Melilla for hours, interrupting shipments to the centuries-old Spanish city of 70,000 at the tip of North Africa between the Mediterranean and northern Morocco.
Protest leader Mounaim Chaouki said the blockade would be ramped up on Monday, after a break during the Muslim holy day of Friday and over the weekend, but will then be expanded to include construction materials, according to Spain's El Mundo newspaper. He said protesters on Tuesday will start preventing Moroccan women who work in Melilla as maids from crossing over, the newspaper reported.