Italy seeks to relocate 450 refugees waiting off its shores to other countries of the European Union as Rome struggles to stick with its policy of banning humanitarian rescue ships from docking at its ports.
Italian authorities have refused to take in refugees on board an Italian ship, sending a strong signal to allies in the European Union that the new populist government in Rome is determined to force a change in the EU refugee policy.
Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has warned that Italy's decision to close its ports to humanitarian rescue boats would entrap more refugees in Libya's detention centers and in the hands of traffickers, where they face torture.
Germany, Austria and Italy will hold talks next week on how to “shut” the southern migration route into Europe and plan to work together on that issue, Germany’s Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said on Thursday.
EU leaders defended a hard-won migration deal agreed after marathon talks on Friday that Italy hailed as a breakthrough despite emerging doubts on whether bloc partners would shoulder more responsibility for migrants.
Italy's Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said Wednesday that without an "official apology" from France, a planned meeting between Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and French President Emmanuel Macron on Friday should be canceled.