What a lovely season! Summer!
Beaches, sun, holidays. Everything is beautiful during summer. Mainly, if you live in one of the most beautiful countries in the world. At least, one of the best, according to the lovely weather, for sure.
Albeit we can’t talk about the political climate in the same way.
August 3rd, 2021: the cameras of the political talk show “In Onda” are in Lampedusa, Italy’s southernmost island, a privileged landing place for migrant ships. This is not out of fury towards the inhabitants, but because of its proximity and convenience – it is better to clarify that immediately. During the show, the cameras film a landing: a ship docks on the beach, welcomed and escorted by the police. Women and men, who have arrived, were identified as Tunisians. In fact, most of the arrivals in Italy during this hot and strange summer came from there, due to the country’s current political instability.
The debates on migrants explodes once again, attributable to the TV footage of the landing.
Immediately, leading members of the Italian right-wing parties took full advantage of the opportunity to politically exploit the fact: “There are two foreign NGOs, Ocean Viking and Sea Watch 3, which are in foreign waters with about 800 people on board. If yet another load of illegal immigrants were to arrive in Italy, there would be someone who obviously doesn’t know how to do his job”. These were the words by Matteo Salvini, leader of the Italian League. The reference – or the attack – is to Luciana Lamorgese, Minister of the Internal Affairs in the current government led by Mario Draghi and also supported with the votes from Salvini’s League.
Salvini (former Minister) insinuates that Minister Lamorgese does not know how to do her job. Let’s see if this is true.
Giving a quick summary, this is Lamorgese’s resume:
- Law degree;
- Qualification to practice law;
- Won the competition for Prefect in March 1979;
- Appointed Prefect in 2003;
- Head of Cabinet of the Ministry since 2013;
- Counsellor of State since 2018;
- Minister since 2019.
It is rather unlikely that Salvini is referring to Luciana Lamorgese, when he says that there is someone who does not know how to do their job. Perhaps, he is referring to Mario Draghi, the current President of the Council of Ministers. Let’s see:
- Degree in Economics;
- Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (better known as M.I.T.);
- Teaches Political Economy at the Universities of Trento, Venice and Florence;
- From 1984 to 1990 Executive Director at the World Bank;
- In 2005 Governor of the Bank of Italy;
- Since 2011 President of the European Central Bank;
- In 2021 President of the Italian Council of Ministers.
No, perhaps Salvini was wrong, incompetence does not live in the Draghi-Lamorgese household. So where does it live? For example, what is Matteo Salvini’s resume, with particular attention to his migration and defense competences? Let’s see:
Well, we have found incompetence.
Thus, we are commenting on the political words of a person, whom despite his lack of competence, has been a Minister without being able to boast any real data of improvement within his own administrative tenure as a government of action. Once he has been replaced by people of proven and certified ability, he criticises them for the landing of 71 people in 24 hours.
In all seriousness, take a moment and try to provide information with rationality; let us attempt to exemplify the current situation and the action that the Italian Government is putting in place in responding to the unquestionable surge of migrants’ flows during the summer season.
At the moment, the Lampedusa hotspot has about 1,200 people, despite having a 250 person capacity, whereby creating great pressure on its facilities, considering a failure to act at this moment could worsen the current political situation in a slippery slope predicament.
This is why, on August 4th, Mario Draghi held talks with the President of the Tunisian Republic, Kais Said: with the focus of the conversation were on the aid that Italy will continue to provide and the migration flows.
At the same time, Minister Lamorgese heard from the EU Commissioner for Home Affairs Ylva Johansonn and then flew to Tripoli to meet the Prime Minister of the national unity government Abdulhamid Dabaiba and Interior Minister Khaled Mazen.
Numbers show that 1,000 people have landed in the last four days, in addition to the 8,600 in July (1,000 more than last year) and 5,800 in June (three times more than in 2020). This increase migrants flow were due impart to the instability in Libya and the ongoing political crisis in Tunisia, which continues to accelerate the departures.
The result achieved at the moment by the Italian side is the calling of an emergency table scheduled for mid-August that will focus on the European management of landings. In particular, an extraordinary Internal Affairs Council is being plan to reinforce the EU borders and discussion on the compulsory redistribution of migrants.
Italy is moving to the best of its ability, but nevertheless, there is another fundamental knot to unravel: the humanitarian one.
With regard to the prevention of irregular migration flows and human trafficking, the Italian side has confirmed its willingness to quickly and concretely develop projects dedicated to the Libyan borders. At the same time, Italy will intensify its financial commitment to promote rural development with a focus in stabilising the Fezzan area, which is affected by a high density of migration.
During these negotiations, a part of the Italian people are rioting against the deals.
The first mobilisation took place on 14th July in Piazza Montecitorio in Rome to denounce the renewal of Italy’s agreements with Libya. The finger pointing against the exorbitant expenditure by the Italian state faces in order to subsidise the Libyan coastguard: the country has spent 785 million euros to block migrants’ flows from Libya.
Italian funds continued to be used in bring migrants back to detention centres in Libya, where there is a “system of open violation of human rights”, according to Amnesty International. Maybe it should be highlighted that Italy signed the so-called ECHR (European Convention on Human Rights), including art. 3 that punishes “torture or inhuman and degrading treatment”.
Those agreements have now been renewed and Italy will once again find itself subsidising torture and human rights violations.
And all due to an incompetent is stirring up the masses for a fistful of extra votes, whereby, forcing our institutions to move ever further to the right in order not to lose political their ground.
Compromise downwards, or rather, to the right.
Edited By Simon Sundaraj