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Italy sounds alarm as 4,000 immigrants land

Rome (AFP) - Italy said Wednesday that 4,000 immigrants have reached its shores by boat in the past two days -- the highest number since it launched a naval operation to rescue them at sea

Rome (AFP) – Italy said Wednesday that 4,000 immigrants have reached its shores by boat in the past two days — the highest number since it launched a naval operation to rescue them at sea in the wake of two shipwrecks last year.

“The landings are non-stop and the emergency is increasingly glaring,” Interior Minister Angelino Alfano told Rai Uno public radio, adding that a corpse had been found on one of the migrant boats rescued.

Alfano estimated that 15,000 migrants crossing the Mediterranean had been rescued so far this year and said up to 600,000 migrants from Africa and the Middle East were ready to set off from Libyan shores.

He called on the international community to set up “refugee camps” in Libya and said the next six months would be “extremely difficult” because favourable weather conditions meant more would make the crossing.

Italy reported a 60-percent increase in asylum claims last year — mainly people fleeing the war in Syria — although the number of arrivals is still lower than in the wake of the Arab Spring revolts in 2011.

“Europe must take the situation in hand. It cannot say that, having given 80 million euros ($110 million) to Frontex, the problem has been resolved,” Alfano said, referring to the European Union’s border control agency.

Alfano, who is also head of the New Centre-Right party, also said that “the procedure for expelling those who do not have a right to stay in Italy should be sped up, but we should welcome those who have a right to asylum”.

Boat_Rescue_2The latest increase comes just ahead of European Parliament elections next month and lawmakers from the anti-immigration Northern League — a small opposition party — have been quick to weigh in on the issue.

MPs Davide Caparini and Nicola Molteni released a statement urging Alfano to stop the arrivals “by turning them back” and complained that asylum-seekers were getting better treatment “than any Italian citizen”.

– ‘No more space’ –

But Silvia Canciani, a spokesperson for the Association for Legal Studies on Immigration (ASGI), which carries out research and provides legal aid for asylum-seekers, played down the scale of the new influx.

“The number of people arriving is increasing but it is only becoming an emergency because of the bad management of Italy’s asylum system,” she said.

She warned there was “no more space” in asylum and immigration centres, stressing that vulnerable migrants such as minors risked not receiving the care they needed if they were put up only in temporary structures.

Senator Luigi Manconi from the centre-left Democratic Party, head of the human rights committee in parliament, also agreed the problem was Italy’s own.

“We are not facing an invasion, absolutely not. We have to criticise ourselves for not putting in the necessary measures in time,” he said.

Review overview
  • aba_chegora April 10, 2014

    After the incident at lampedusa, i thought that this dangerous undertaking of crossing the mediteranian would end. I was wrong. Of course i understand that the youth are desperate to escape dictatorship and want to live in democracy. However i am wondering who is going to blame if another lapedusa-like incident happens?

    • Saba April 10, 2014

      I and you are to be blamed because we are not doing enough on our part in fighting the criminal regime in Eritrea.

      Haftka Saba

      • Sorobeti April 10, 2014


        Great and fair respond to the fishy question of aba_Chegora.

      • Zeray April 10, 2014

        Thank you. That was the best answer. We are all to blame for letting one dictator bring countless suffering to most Eritreans.

    • Gideon April 11, 2014


      Let us stop shenkolel, in short, enough is enough. It is not the right time to play with the blaming game. Desperate times demand desperate measures/actions.

  • m April 10, 2014

    what joke this is not funny att all, evryday tragedy,the whole world laughing to us, we are selfish and cowards, why we escape like rats,we have to stay in our land to fight to the dictator this is the only solution otherwayss we die for nothing at Lampourdus,Sinai,Sawa,and why we suffering a lot at-camp-Sudan,Ethiopia,Malta,Isreal,what is wrong with us, we have to stand togther be uinty,and fight to the dictator to be free

  • Truly Truly i say to you April 10, 2014

    If the Italians for real touched by those 365 in Lampadusa perishid Eritreans, they should not see Eritrean blood as ransom or as offering price which should to pay for rescuing other nationals. This offends me at much as i am a Christian and as well those perished in Lampadusa also as were Christians , not were pagans or by Jesus name and blood not baptized.
    I feel Eritrean blood is considering like donkey´s blood elsewhere which decided as ransom or offering price presenting for rescuing others nationals ( like it is written in Exodus 13, 13) Even Ethiopians Specially (Woyanes )are at most prevailing by Eritrean suffer and sacrifice .
    I do not know, Dr. Tewolde (Wodi vacaro) what feels about as Eritrean and as more knowing Italians. He should to tell Italian officials, if they really feel human and touched by the incident in Lampadusa, they should to rescue our people those inside home suffering from the hand of ruthless wicked evil dictator. He is the root cause for all Eritren tragedy. This is a real solution which pleases Almighty God as well by all human kind accepted well come support, not for ransom Eritrean blood if they rescuing others.

  • Truly Truly i say to you April 10, 2014

    If the Italians really touched by incident of Lampadusa, they should not to take the 365 perished Eritreans as ransom or offering blood price for rescuing other nationals. Eritrean blood is not donkey´s blood which should to present other nationals for rescuing as like it is written in (exodus 13; 13). First of all those perished were Christians baptized by Jesus name, Jesus pored his blood also for them. I really offended as i am a Christian and Eritrean.
    If really Italians realy feel human being and touched by Lampaduisa incident, they should to rescue Eritreans from the hand of ruthless wicked dictator hand from who is the root cause of for all Eritre tragedy. This is what please God and every humankind acceptable humanitarian , not for Eritrea victimizes when you rescuing others. Syrians and Ethiopians are atmost they privileging for Eritreans paying random specially not only from Lampadusa tragedy but for all refugee crises and for Badme war they are atmost privileging in Eritrean crisis..

  • ahmed saleh April 10, 2014

    The last couple of years Italy experienced difficulties to accomodate
    thousands of refugees from Middle East and Africa . At this time also
    the big number of Syrian refugees including the big number in Libyan shore waiting for the trip to cross might complicate their future statues .
    Eritreans should change the course of destructive judgment in their life
    because abandoning their people couldn’t be an alternative . Take the
    lesson of our neighbors Arab youth uprising as an example . If death
    doesn’t scare them why not die with pride inside their country .

  • bitew ahferom April 10, 2014

    ahmed saleh & Truly Truly i say to you ,

    for once you are on similar page.Ahmed Saleh says if the youth are not scared of dangerous death why not die for a precious aim back home & Truly Truly i say to you ,says woyane is benefitting of such death.
    well ,I was being realistic saying we need to discourage them to flee and encourage them to fight the regime ,if I say let us go from abroad ,who would go?

  • ahmed saleh April 10, 2014

    M M free

    • ahmed saleh April 11, 2014

      M m free ?
      Please ignore the comment it might be by mistake .

  • hmm April 11, 2014

    Let us cut the crap and speak the truth. Our youngsters are turned in to a herd of cattle. Just like a herd of buffalo, they follow the crowd even if the crowd is headed to a wrong side of a cliff. They are no longer using their brain to analyze things. We have to admit these groups of immigrants are economical immigrants running away from refugee camps in Ethiopia. I am losing respect for these ignorant Eritreans. If they are risking their lives to go to Arab countries where they are treated like garbage, why can’t they take similar risk to unite themselves and remove the dictator from Eritrea? their siblings and remaining family members will be abused by PFDJ even if they save themselves, so the best thing would be to remove the cancer from our country once and for all.

  • Tezareb April 11, 2014

    The most endangered species on the planet are joined by the poor Kebesa Eritreans. The Kebesa will die off in extinction soon.
    But the opportunist Ghedli Romantics are blaming for all these debacle on Issaias Afewerki only.

    The opportunist Ghedli romantics will never ever bring anything good to Eritrea except misery. You are hiding with your families in California, Australia, Saudi Arabia, England, USA, Canada, Sweden … shouting the lies of democracy, election and freedom.
    You are all pathetic liars, except the very few brave Eritrean women and men, such as, Meron, Elsa, Alganesh, Azezet, Yebio, Aba Mussie, Assenna, Erenna.

    The rest of you are all hypocrites and Issaias knows you all very well.

    • ahmed omer April 17, 2014

      Tezareb stop talking rubbish an unreasonable .To be honest every single Eritrean has a lot of mistakes specially so called kebesa people (I am from kebesa ) in past and now all crisis to Eritrea and it’s people is behind kebesa people (KOMANDOS AND SHABIA ) because majority of them are thinking and believing like you .All what is happen to Eritrean specially losing their brave how do you think 30 leash by 2 or three RASHYDAoutside Eritrea and in Eritrea the same why they Eritrean people do not defend it’self specially the youth .
      so Tezareb stop bad and wegen zereba if you are going keep like this this means you are do not worry about Eritrean people .if you love your people call for good to them please nothing to loss .