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Italy declares migrant state of emergency

Italy's state of emergency over migrants will last six months.

Italy's right-wing government on Tuesday declared a national state of emergency to cope with a surge in migrants arriving on the country's shores.


The state of emergency, announced following a cabinet meeting in Rome on Tuesday evening, will last six months and will be supported with initial funding of €5 million.


The measure is aimed at improving the management of migrant arrivals, including the faster repatriation of those not permitted to stay in Italy as well as boosting identification and expulsion orders.


"We have decided on a state of emergency on immigration to give more effective and timely responses to the management of flows", prime minister Giorgia Meloni said in a statement.


"Let it be clear, we are not solving the problem, whose solution can depend only on responsible intervention by the European Union," Nello Musumeci, the minister for civil protection and sea policies, told news agency ANSA.


The move comes more than a month after a boat carrying migrants ran aground off Italy's southern Calabrian coast, resulting in the deaths of at least 93 people in a disaster that made international news.


Italy's state of emergency legislation, a mechanism employed during the covid pandemic, grants special powers to national and regional authorities, cutting through red tape to implement, modify or revoke measures when required.


Photo credit: Alessio Tricani /
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