Italy has challenged France to take in migrants it promised to accept under an EU agreement, accusing Paris of turning back 10,000 people. The row flared up after France slammed Italy for turning away a ship with 629 migrants.
Earlier Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, said that Italian government did not have any intention to receive “hypocritical lessons” from someone who “in terms of immigration had always preferred to turn their head to the other side.”
Conte, who is scheduled to travel to Paris on Friday, insisted that his visit was now out of the question unless he received a formal apology from President Macron. In the meantime, Italy’s Foreign Ministry summoned the French ambassador amid the heated dispute between Paris and Rome.
Conte’s stance was backed by the Interior Minister and leader of the League party, Matteo Salvini, who in his address to Parliament,
According to the data
Following Italy’s firm “no” to the ship’s disembarkment in its ports, the vessel that was stranded in international waters was redirected to the island of Malta. Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat slammed Rome for violating international law, as he himself refused to give the ship permission to dock in Malta.
On Monday Spain offered to welcome the rescue ship in its waters, but did not spare its criticism either, as the Spanish Minister of Justice, Dolores Delgado, warned Rome of the possible legal repercussions of its decision. Salvini
Italy’s tough stance was welcomed by the Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who approved of the line taken by Rome to protect its maritime borders “at last”.
Salvini’s initiative was also
in Berlin by his German counterpart, Horst Seehofer, who has been clashing with Chancellor Angela Merkel over her unwillingness to rethink her “open doors” policies.
Piena sintonia con il ministro dell'Interno tedesco, Horst #Seehofer, che mi ha invitato a Berlino dove andrò presto con piacere.— Matteo Salvini (@matteosalvinimi) June 12, 2018
Grazie all'Italia finalmente in Europa si cambia: per difendere i nostri cittadini bisogna tornare a proteggere le frontiere.https://t.co/3dYECHhApq
Forced to receive over 700,000 migrants since 2013, Italy has been deeply affected by the migration influx. In dealing with the issue, the country has been feeling “left alone” by the European Union, since some EU countries preferred to resort to “egotistical closures” of their borders, as Prime Minister Conte defined it.
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