The UK Home Office Secretary Theresa May has joined her EU counterparts in Luxembourg in discussing how to respond to the migrant crisis in the Mediterranean, with Italy threatening a strong response if no deal is reached. A plan to distribute asylum seekers within the 28 EU member states is the major discussing point at the talks in Luxembourg. The Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has given an ultimatum to the EU and said without agreement Italy would adopt a “Plan B” that would “hurt” Europe.
The French government has accused the Italian government of disrespecting the Dublin agreement which says, the EU country where migrants first arrive should deal with their asylum claims, but the Italian government argued that the migrant used Italy as a transit point. The French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said “we have to build solidarity for our Italian friends, and they have to build responsibility”. Responsibility, he explained, must include “organising the return of irregular migrants”.
The migrant, mostly from Sub Saharan Africa, Syrian, Sudan and Eritrea have been prevented from entering France, UK and Denmark. Dozens of migrants have been removed from their camps near the French border by the Italian police as the police in riot gear forcibly shoved some of them onto buses and took them away from Ventimiglia, not far from French Riviera resorts.
This year alone 1800 people have been estimated to have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea while seeking to reach Europe, a 20-fold increase compared to the same period last year. Some EU member states such as Italy, Greece, Germany and Austria favour a deal to share more than 60,000 asylum seekers across 28 EU nations, however, countries such as the UK, Ireland and Denmark are against that plan and they argue that asylum seekers should not be forced to resettle in a country against their will.
Meanwhile, the African leaders who met at the just concluded 25th African Union summit in South Africa have failed to discuss the migrant crisis as most of them are fearful of offending their fellow AU members. Also, due to the fact most African countries are guilty of human rights violations and economic crimes in their countries they have no appetite to discuss the worst human tragedy since the colonial era. However, The Gambian dictator has accused the EU for deliberately killing some of the African migrants and has threatened to sue the EU to International Criminal Court at the Hague. Most analysts said, because Jammeh is an attention seeker that threat is one of those tactics he used to divert attention from his own human rights violations in The Gambia.