Italian ship carrying hundreds of migrants finally docks in Spain

Rescue boat the Aquarius

EPAThe Aquarius is now steaming towards Spain but will be out of the rescue zone for 10 days

"We have to strike a balance between our sensibilities and humanity and our respect for the law", said Spain's migration minister, Magdalena Valerio.

It showed that 68 percent of Italians feel Salvini has done well to "raise his voice" because in this way the rest of Europe would take heed of Italy's worry that it could become what he has called "one big refugee camp".

Moroccan Police look at immigrants trying to jump the six-meter-high fence in Ceuta, Spanish enclave on the north of Africa, 09 December 2016.

Hundreds more are likely to suffer a similar experience.

The Aquarius was being escorted by two vessels, including the Italian coast guard ship.

Le Pen praised Italy for saying "it's finished" accepting boatloads of migrants.

"I am sure there is an obligation for Italy to take them because its closest safe harbour is Lampedusa".

Meanwhile, Spain was also dealing with another wave of migrants arriving by boat along its southern shore. Francis added that "mutual respect" will lead to solutions for the issues involved with migration.

Spain's new Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has promised free healthcare and says it will investigate each asylum case.

"We are happy that this is being covered because it is a symbol of (the fate of other migrant ships)".

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Migrants on board the Aquarius land in Valencia.

A European Union summit will discuss the bloc's asylum rules at the end of the month. NGOs, however, say its warships operate too far out to sea, given that people traffickers favour towing rubber boats full of migrants to the edge of Libya's 12-mile territorial waters before setting them adrift.

Valencia City Council said on Saturday it was expecting the ship to arrive in the next few hours. Emergency workers helping the migrants on Sunday reported that some of them "were in shock" from the strenuous ordeal of their trip across the sea. Italy has defended its decision to refuse the Aquarius and its 600 passengers entry. Two young men traveling on the dinghies involved in the rescue by the Aquarius eight days ago are still missing, and believed drowned.

France - who had angered Rome by branding it irresponsible over the vessel rejection - offered Thursday to welcome Aquarius migrants who "meet the criteria for asylum".

"Two other ships with the flag of Netherlands, Lifeline and Seefuchs, have arrived off the coast of Libya, waiting for their load of human beings abandoned by the smugglers", Matteo Salvini, wrote on his Facebook page.

The EU border agency noted that all the other rescues happened in the Alboran Sea, between northeastern Morocco and southeastern Spain.

Shouts and singing erupted on the ship as the migrants on board saw Valencia on the horizon, Spanish journalist Gabriela Sanchez tweeted from another boat traveling alongside it. It took the convoy almost a week to travel the 930 miles between Sicily and Spain. "I am happy that the journey is over, a journey that was too long, and I am anxious for the situation in the Mediterranean and the closing of European ports".

Under blue skies, migrants danced and sang, their excitement captured in footage released on Twitter by SOS Mediterranee which operates the rescue vessel with Doctors Without Borders (MSF).

Migrants disembark from Italian coast guard boat the Dattilo at the port of Valencia on Sunday.

Spain's first task will be to ascertain the condition of the arriving migrants and then examine each of their individual situations case by case, Valerio said.

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