Malta ‘not taking Salvini’s suggestions too seriously’
A suggestion floated by Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini for migrants’ asylum applications to be processed at sea will not be entertained by the government, sources have told The Sunday Times of Malta.
The right-wing minister from Italy was joined by his Austrian counterpart in calling on the EU to hold rescued migrants at sea until their asylum claims are processed.
The idea was put forward at an EU migration conference in Vienna late last week, attended by Malta’s Home Affairs Minister Michael Farrugia.
Outlining the proposal at a joint news conference, Mr Salvini and Austrian Minister for the Interior Herbert Kickl said that after “appropriate checks” on board ship, migrants entitled to asylum could be brought to the EU while the rest would be taken to ports in third countries.
“You are well looked after on a ship,” Mr Kickl said, adding that the system would help solve the “problem of repatriation”.
“Once people have set foot on the continent, you can only remove them with great difficulty and much expense,” Mr Salvini told reporters.
Government sources yesterday said suggestions of this nature were not a solution to the problems facing the Mediterranean.
Source: Malta ‘not taking Salvini’s suggestions too seriously’