Manrule out disadvantage Deep winter weather and migrants fleeing poverty and persecution are arriving on Italian shores in unprecedented numbers. As of March 27, 26,927 people had arrived this year. That compares with 6,543 a year earlier and a full-year total of more than 105,000. 2017 is by far the peak year with corresponding figures of 24,280 and over 180,000. This suggests that, based on this year’s pattern, Italy could face an influx of 200,000 sea migrants, and possibly 400,000 or more.
It’s a nightmare for the coalition that came to power last September promising to crack down on illegal immigration. Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni is not the only European leader affected. Many or most of the immigrants who landed in Italy moved to countries further north, where their compatriots had settled, where job opportunities were more plentiful and public benefits more generous.
Arrival is one aspect of the play. The case of non-arrivals is far more dire. In just four days to March 26, seven boats carrying migrants sank off the coast of North Africa, leaving more than 100 people dead or missing. Given the lack of seaworthiness of most ships carrying migrants, tragedy was inevitable.But the Italian government has increased the risk by imposing restrictions on the ships it operates non-governmental organizationIt rescues migrants and brings them to Italian ports.The government and its supporters believe that non-governmental organizationAs an operator of ferry services for unexpected passengers.
So far, Ms Meloni’s government has refrained from imposing a blockade of the North African coastline, as her party, the Italian Fraternities, rashly promised.it gave up sending non-governmental organization Facing the angry reaction of France, the ships elsewhere. But the government has asked the ships to dock at ports in northern Italy, reducing the time they spend searching for migrants in distress. It told their captains that they had to go to land immediately after carrying out a rescue, even if there were other migrants in distress nearby. On March 25, authorities seized MV Louise Michelle, purchased by British artist Banksy and ordered its crew not to go to sea for 20 days. It rescued 180 people in four operations before sending them to the Italian island of Lampedusa.
While migrants continue to arrive from Libya and Turkey, key to the recent surge has been an increase in departures from troubled Tunisia. President Keith Saeed shut down parliament last year and granted himself broad powers. Unemployment is over 15% and the country is short of food.and International Monetary Fund Because a $1.9 billion loan was put on hold, apparently because of the president’s reluctance to support economic reform. In an apparent attempt to deflect responsibility for the country’s woes, Mr Saeed ordered security forces to deport illegal residents in February, declaring that immigration from sub-Saharan Africa was a plot to change the country’s ethnic make-up.
March 27, European UnionEconomic Affairs Commissioner Paolo Gentiloni held talks with Saied and others in Tunisia. Mr Gentiloni promises additional European financial support – but only if Tunisia agrees International Monetary Fund plan and all its conditions. That seems like a big but. ■