March 2, 2021

Salvini prohibits the landing of 135 migrants in a new challenge to the EU

Since last Thursday an Italian Coast Guard patrol boat with 135 migrants on board awaits authorization to dock at a port before the ban of Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, who has re-launched his challenge to the European Union.

Interior sources told the media on Friday "that the European Commission has been officially requested to coordinate the distribution operations of immigrants who are aboard a ship of the Italian Coast Guard. It is about 135 people. awaiting official responses no port for landing has been indicated. "

From that moment, just silence. Neither the Coast Guard, nor government sources, nor the Ministry of Interior have reported the fate of the 135 migrants or given details of whether there are women or children, or their health conditions.

It is only known that they are on board the Gregoretti patrol boat, in which they embarked about 90 migrants rescued in two pneumatic boats during the day on Thursday and the 50 that were assisted by the Italian fishing vessel "Accursio Giarratano".

The fisherman requested help from Malta, but before the refusal of the authorities of this country he went to the Italian Coast Guard.

The Italian NGO "Mediterranea Saving Humans" to whom the Italian Justice has seized two ships in the framework of the investigations, informed that it will donate 10,000 euros to the fishing crew for his gesture.

Meanwhile, members of the opposition have questioned the Minister of Transportation and belonging to the 5-Star Movement, Danilo Toninelli, so that answers on the reasons for the blockade of a patrol car from a body of its competence and that does not depend on Interior.

At the moment, Italian media claim that the patrol car is heading towards Catania, where it will wait for the situation to be resolved.

On July 23, fourteen countries of the European Union gave their "agreement of principle" to a Franco-German initiative for a temporary mechanism that allows the landing of rescued migrants in the central Mediterranean and their subsequent distribution among states, as announced by the French president, Emmanuel Macron, after a meeting convened in Paris.

However, Italy did not participate in this meeting and Salvini said it was "an error of form and substance", and stated that "Italy is not the companion of anybody and does not obey any order".

The prohibition of docking an Italian ship has already occurred on other occasions as last August with the Coast Guard patrol boat, Diciotti, which Salvini blocked off the coast of Sicily for five days with 138 immigrants on board.

This cost him a judicial investigation for kidnapping people, but he avoided being investigated after most of the senators voted against authorizing the opening of a judicial process, a necessary step that provides for parliamentary immunity.

At the moment, in the central Mediterranean there are no ships of any European operation, nor of rescue NGOs, as some have seen how the Italian Justice has seized their ships in the framework of investigations.

The only operational ship at this time is the "Ocean Viking" of SOS Mediterranée and Doctors without Borders, but has not yet reached the area, and the Open Arms ship is docked in Sicily.

Cristina Cabrejas

. (tagsToTranslate) Salvini (t) prohibits (t) landing (t) migrants (t) EU

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