European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has praised Italy’s response to Europe’s irregular migration crisis in a letter to Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni following last week’s shipwreck that killed more than 60 migrants. [EPA-EFE/FILIPPO ATTILI]
In the letter dated 6 March, which was seen by EURACTIV, Von der Leyen praises Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s government, stating that “the work done by Italy and others to offer safe and legal pathways to vulnerable people through humanitarian corridors makes a vital contribution.”
“It is clear that migration is a European challenge that requires a European solution,” stated von der Leyen, adding that EU lawmakers need to finalise the legislation that forms the bloc’s New Pact on Migration and Asylum.
It also refers to an upcoming EU Resettlement Forum in May that will look at “how to continue supporting at the EU level Italy’s experience with humanitarian corridors.”
The letter from the Commission chief is a response to a letter from Meloni following the sinking off the south Italian coast of Calabria of a boat carrying several hundred migrants. Since the tragedy, which left more than 60 people dead, there have been contradictory statements from the Italian and Greek governments and the EU’s border control agency Frontex, about the events leading up to the boat sinking.
Last weekend, Meloni stated that the Italian authorities did not receive emergency communication from Frontex and that there was no warning that the boat was in danger of sinking.
On Tuesday (7 March) Interior Minister Matteo Piantedosi reiterated that Frontex did not provide them with any warnings or distress calls, during an urgent briefing to parliament.
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By: Miss Cherry May Timbol – Independent Reporter
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