Published On: Tue, Jun 12th, 2018

Italy news: Salvini calls on EU to STEP UP as he warns he’s ready to reject more boats | World | News

The eurosceptic deputy PM blasted other European countries for leaving Italy virtually alone to manage the large migrant flux reaching Italian coasts since 2015.

Mr Salvini announced on June 10 Italy would refuse entry to its ports to the Aquarius boat carrying 629 migrants from Lybia sparking an immediate response from the European Union.

But the Italian politician pledged to do maintain his hard-line policy with other boats to spur other countries into contributing to managing the migrant crisis.

Speaking to the press, Mr Salvini said: “Should there be other boats from other foreign ONGs with a foreign flag, we will do the same.

“Hadn’t we stopped this boat, where would it have landed? In Italy. And tomorrow it would have been the same and the day after it would have been the same.

“There will be other arrivals, obviously: I don’t have a magic wand, I am not Superman. I wanted to start a debate on a continental level and to prove Chancellor Merkel’s point that ‘Italy was left alone, it can’t go on like this.’

“I wanted to involve those who were not involved like Spain and I’d like Malta to assume its responsibilities, proportionally to its territorial extension.”

He added: “I’d also like France to be involved, the UK to be involved. I’d like everyone to feel a bit like Italy.”

Following two days of uncertainty, the Aquarius was redirected to Valencia and Barcelona after Spain’s President Pedro Sanchez announced his country would welcome the boat.

Mr Salvini welcomed Mr Sanchez’ decision, saying he would welcome Madrid’s support in the future.

He continued: “I’m happy Spain has become involved once again considering Spain has always defended with strength its borders.

“The new Government evidently wanted to send a signal of humanity and it’s ok because I’m a concrete person and I care about the results.

“If Sanchez is happy about this, I can’t help but thank him. I actually hope is availability will continue to be as such for further intervention we might have to carry out.”

By not letting migrants in, Mr Salvini is trying to avoid Italy to take upon itself this burden.

Italy’s new Lega and Five Star Movement (M5S) coalition Government pledged it would pressure the bloc into reforming its immigration policy to ensure member states have an equal role in managing the migration crisis.

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>