Ceuta is an 18.5-square-kilometre (7.1 sq mi) autonomous city of Spain and an exclave located on the north coast ofAfrica and has a western border with Morocco. Separated from the Iberian peninsula by the Strait of Gibraltar, Ceuta lies on the border of the Mediterranean Sea and theAtlantic Ocean. Ceuta was deemed a part of Cadiz province prior to 14 March 1995, when the city's Statute of Autonomy was passed.
Ceuta (like Melilla) was a free port before Spain joined the European Union. As of 2011, it has a population of 78,674. Its population consists of Christians, Muslims (chieflyMoroccan Arabic speakers), and small minorities of Jews and Hindus. Spanish is the official language.
Morocco had previously called for negotiations on the future of Ceuta, Melilla and anumber of Mediterranean islands and enclaves that border it. The majority of the city's population is ethnic Spanish who are opposed to the idea of being ruled by Morocco. A poll conducted by Instituto Opina found that 87.9% of people from mainland Spain consider the two cities to be Spanish