Migrants Outnumber Locals On Italian Island

(Cupventi.com) – Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni emphasized the urgency for the European Union to establish a naval blockade in the Mediterranean Sea, viewing it as crucial for safeguarding the future of Europe. She stressed, “What is at stake is the future of Europe because the future of Europe depends on its capacity to deal with the huge challenges of our time,” as reported by The Telegraph.

Meloni’s call for a blockade follows European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen’s visit to Lampedusa, an Italian island grappling with a surging influx of migrants. Over 10,000 migrants arrived at the island last week, exceeding its permanent population of 6,000. Meloni asserted that the only “serious” solution to the crisis is a blockade preventing migrants from departing North African nations for Europe.

According to data compiled by the Telegraph, Italy has witnessed approximately 126,000 migrant arrivals since the beginning of the year, nearly double the figures from the same period in 2022, hinting at a potential surpassing of the 2016 record of 160,000 arrivals.

Meloni’s stance on curbing migration forms a pivotal aspect of her policy commitments, yet actualizing this promise has proven challenging. Nile Gardiner, the Director of the Heritage Foundation’s Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom, noted the magnitude of the crisis and highlighted Meloni’s struggles amid a Europe that has shown perceived weakness in addressing the issue.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen pledged support for Italy, emphasizing the return of “irregular” migrants and a crackdown on ruthless migrant smuggling operations. She unveiled a comprehensive 10-point plan aimed at aiding Italy in managing the influx of migrants, including relocation to other European nations and assistance with registration and fingerprinting.

Meloni expressed optimism that discussions regarding an EU naval blockade mission would take place during an upcoming meeting of European leaders in October. Support for this proposal was also voiced by leaders of other European nations, such as Germany and France.

However, Gardiner maintained skepticism about garnering substantial support from other European powers. He suggested that a naval blockade might be Italy’s best recourse to stem the crisis, even if broader assistance from the EU or other countries appears unlikely.

To counter legal complexities hindering the deportation of illegal migrants, Gardiner proposed Italy’s departure from the EU and the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). While acknowledging potential challenges, he emphasized that a naval blockade would likely resonate well with the Italian populace and serve as a practical approach within Italy’s capabilities to address the crisis.

In conclusion, Gardiner emphasized that decisive action led by Meloni and executed by the Italian Navy is imperative for Italy to effectively manage the crisis, highlighting the Navy’s capacity to deter migrant vessels from reaching Italian shores.