Germany Urges Italy to Rescue All Migrants as Tensions Escalate - BLOOMBERG
NOVEMBER 07, 2022
(Bloomberg) -- Germany responded to new Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s tougher line on migrants by calling on her government to allow access to all refugees arriving by boat.
Meloni’s right-wing administration denied entry at the weekend to some passengers aboard two ships carrying hundreds of migrants, fueling tensions with Italy’s European Union partners. The vessels -- one of which was under German flag -- had docked at Catania on the island of Sicily.
Andrea Sasse, a spokeswoman for Germany’s foreign ministry, said Monday that the rescue of civilians from the sea is a moral and legal duty. The government in Berlin is currently in talks with counterparts in Rome over the legal status of the refugees, Sasse added.
A hard-line stance on illegal migration was a key part of Meloni’s election platform before she was installed last month as the country’s most right-wing premier since World War II.
Many migrants from Africa arrive in Italy by boat in an attempt to enter the EU. The government in Rome argues that the countries under whose flags the ships are operating are responsible for the passengers.