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Italy rejects Brussels plan to pay Euro 6.000 for each migrant saved at sea

Wednesday, July 25th 2018 - 06:06 UTC
Full article 11 comments
“We aren’t asking for charity handouts. Every asylum-seeker costs the Italian taxpayer between 40,000 and 50,000 Euros”, Matteo Salvini said “We aren’t asking for charity handouts. Every asylum-seeker costs the Italian taxpayer between 40,000 and 50,000 Euros”, Matteo Salvini said

“We don't want money, we want dignity”, was the reply of Italian Minister of Interior Matteo Salvini to the European Commission proposal for EU member states be paid 6,000 Euro to accept and deal with each migrant saved at sea in the Mediterranean as they attempt to reach the European Union.

 The EU’s executive said it wants to offer “full financial support” to any member state volunteering to set up so-called controlled centers where people in need of international protection and those who have no right to stay in the 28-nation bloc will be assessed.

The leaders of EU member states decided in a summit last month how to deal with the pressures of migration after they accommodated Italian demands for more help. EU member states will start discussing the matter on Thursday.

According to European rules, refugees applying for asylum must do so in the country where they are first registered — a situation that does not suit front-line countries such as Italy and Greece, where many migrants first land.

Brussels on Tuesday also offered to pay for the hundreds of staff members needed to manage centers where migrants and asylum seekers could be processed to avoid having them travel through Europe to secondary destinations.

But Italy quickly rebuffed the suggestion.

“We aren’t asking for charity handouts. Every asylum-seeker costs the Italian taxpayer between 40,000 and 50,000 Euros”, Salvini said after the offer was announced, ”Brussels, they can keep their charity for themselves.”

Jeff Rathke, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies' Europe program, said that “it's not really about the money for the Italians.”

“It's about their desire along with a few other like-minded E.U. member states to shift the debate and shift the paradigm of how Europe is dealing with migration,” Rathke said. “I think it's unlikely that a particular level of compensation is going to change the approach or perspective of this Italian government.”

Categories: Politics, International.

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  • DemonTree

    There's something to be said for the argument that less people would have died if they had never started saving them at sea.

    Jul 25th, 2018 - 10:29 am 0
  • Pugol-H

    Look at what worked for the Australians, anyone arriving there went to a camp in the Pacific until their case was decided. No boats now try and get to Aus and nobody is drowning.

    Jul 25th, 2018 - 12:37 pm 0
  • Conqueror

    It's difficult to understand where the European Commission gets its ideas from. At a basic level, who thought it was a good idea to offer €6,000 of countries' own money to persuade them to take in illegal migrants. Unless anyone wants to argue, I see no reason to doubt Signor Salvini's estimate of €50,000 per migrant. So the receiving country will be €44,000 out of pocket for every individual. “Pull” factor, anyone? However, to save on all the bureaucracy, here's an excellent idea. Start by erecting a 15-metre high electrified razor wire fence around central Brussels to form a 50-kilometre diameter enclosure. Provide trains from the EU borders to stations within the Brussels “ring”. Immediately transport all illegal migrants from the EU borders to the Brussels “ring” in sealed trains. Surround the Brussels “ring” with Greek, Hungarian, Italian and Polish police transferred from their national forces and paid “expenses” at the same rate as that claimed by eurocrats. Of course, the eurocrats will have to go without. But they will have to stay within the Brussels “ring”.

    Jul 25th, 2018 - 03:34 pm 0
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