Italian Concerns Over German Funding for Migrant Aid Groups:
Italy’s defense minister, Guido Crosetto, criticized Germany’s plan to finance charities assisting migrants in the Mediterranean. Additionally, he highlighted that this move poses challenges for Italy, which is working on enforcing stricter measures to curb the influx of sea arrivals.
German Financial Support for Migrant Aid:
The German foreign ministry confirmed that Berlin was implementing a financial support program through the parliament for civilian sea rescue and land-based projects aiding migrants. The funding ranges from 400,000 to 800,000 euros for each project, aiming to provide assistance to both rescue operations and initiatives on land.
Italian Perspective and Critique:
Crosetto conveyed that Italy views Germany’s approach as very serious. He emphasized their commitment to combat human smugglers as international criminals. Additionally, he expressed concern that Germany’s actions have created difficulties for Italy, a country that should ideally be an ally.
Germany Defends Its Actions:
Germany’s foreign ministry defended its support, emphasizing that rescuing people at sea aligns with legal, humanitarian, and moral obligations. Furthermore, they emphasized that their actions are consistent with international legal standards and underscored the necessity of upholding these principles in addressing the mess of migrants.
Rising Migrant Arrivals and Italy’s Response:
The latest data from Italy’s interior ministry revealed a notable increase in migrant arrivals, with over 132,000 migrants reaching Italy by boat this year, compared to around 69,000 during the same period last year. In response, Italy plans to enhance its detention centers for migrants awaiting possible repatriation and extend their detention duration. Additionally, Italy has introduced a measure requiring migrants to pay to avoid detention while their protection requests are being processed, sparking criticism from human rights groups.
This news highlights the tensions and different approaches between Italy and Germany regarding the handling of migrants and the support provided to humanitarian organizations assisting them in the Mediterranean.