italian cabinet adopts new measures to better manage migration flows
Last Updated : GMT 05:21:58
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Last Updated : GMT 05:21:58
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Italian cabinet adopts new measures to better manage migration flows

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Arab Today, arab today Italian cabinet adopts new measures to better manage migration flows

Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni
Rome - ArabToday

Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni's cabinet on Friday approved a package of new measures to better manage migration flows in the country.

Key provisions included boosting repatriation of illegal migrants, and shortening the average proceeding time for asylum requests.

"Our strategic aim is not to shut our doors," Gentiloni told reporters after a cabinet meeting.

"We want to transform migration flows from a predominantly irregular phenomenon to a regular one, in which no life is put in danger, and arrivals in our country are regulated," he said.

New permanent repatriation centers will be created across the country, according to the cabinet's decree. "They will be small in dimension, and would provide a total 1,600 available places," interior minister Marco Minniti told reporters.

"There will be one repatriation center in each Italian region (except for small Valle d'Aosta and Molise regions), to be located near major transport infrastructures and, if possible, outside cities," Minniti added.

Another measure would allow Italian municipalities to regularly employ asylum seekers in "socially useful" jobs, such as maintenance of public spaces, or volunteer work with local charities.

The Italian government had already suggested such measures in late 2014, but it has been randomly applied by few municipalities so far.

Besides boosting repatriation and involving asylum seekers in local society, a third key pillar of the decree concerned the length of asylum request proceedings.

Currently, two years is the average time asylum seekers have to wait for a definitive response from Italian authorities, according to the interior ministry. "It is too long, again for both the applicant and the society," Minniti said.

Two measures to speed up the response time were introduced: firstly, cancelling the one degree in the Italian court system to which applicants can appeal; secondly, nominating an extra 250 experts to strengthen existing asylum committees and alleviate their burden.

Italy has taken in a large majority of the migration flows coming from North Africa to Europe through the Mediterranean lately, with a record of 181,000 arrivals registered in 2016.

source: Xinhua

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