The Italian government has declared a six-month nationwide state of emergency as thousands of migrants flood the country’s southern coast, resulting in overflowing shelters. The situation puts Italian citizens at risk as these people coming onto their shores could include terrorists and other security threats.
Recently, Italy has seen a significant increase in refugees reaching the southern shores from the north of Africa, welcoming over 3,000 migrants in the last three days alone. The Italian government has rented several empty commercial ferries to house the African refugees.
Civil Protection and Sea Policies Minister Nello Musumeci has stressed that immigration has increased by 300%. The influx of migrants is not a new issue for Italy. In 2021, nonstop Muslim migrant landings in Lampedusa became a “situation out of control.” Lampedusa remains the problem area, along with the entire Southern coast of Sicily.
Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and her cabinet met on Tuesday at Palazzo Chigi in Rome to discuss the invasion. The cabinet meeting statement highlighted that “extraordinary measures” are needed to decongest the Lampedusa hotspot. The government plans to create new structures to house the migrants and repatriate those without the requirements to stay in Italy.
Meloni and her Cabinet have approved funding of nearly $5.5 million allocated to the funds for national emergencies, indicating the Italian government’s seriousness in addressing this issue.