The deteriorating humanitarian situation in the Middle East is giving rise to illegal migration and increasing the number of shipwrecks along the Mediterranean coast. Author: AFP
ROME, 9 March. The small island of Lampedusa, Italy’s southernmost city, received about 1,700 migrants in just 24 hours, more than 700 of them early Thursday morning, March 9, ahead of a new wave of landings.
A municipal official said that 13 boats carrying 470 more immigrants arrived in the first hours, and about 2,000 people filled Imbriacola’s small local reception center with a capacity of 300 people, according to Prensa Latina.
In the midst of this ongoing avalanche of landings, two shipwrecks of small boats from Tunisia occurred on Wednesday, and while Coast Guard and Port Captaincy troops managed to rescue about 58 people, the last one barely killed a woman in her 20s, the source said.
The worsening of this situation comes at a time when a special meeting of the Council of Ministers is expected to consider this issue, to be held in the municipality of Cutro, in the southern region of Calabria, where a shipwreck claimed the lives of at least 70 migrants on February 26.
On the agenda of this contact is the discussion and approval of urgent provisions to combat illegal immigration, including an extension of up to ten years in prison for traffickers, who currently face a sentence of one to five years.
According to RTVE, the fatal shipwreck of Calabria represents another tragedy in the Mediterranean that once again highlights the conditions of life in the countries of origin from which the migrants are fleeing. On this occasion, most of the passengers of the sunken boat a few meters from the Italian coast fled from Afghanistan, which has been under the rule of the Taliban for more than a year and a half and threatens to become the epicenter of one of the largest crises. humanitarian, according to the UN. The rest came from other countries that were also punished, such as Syria, Palestine, Pakistan, Iran or Somalia.
Source: Juventud Rebelde