Written Question: Rise in arrivals of irregular migrants in Italy and resumption of negotiations on the Malta agreements
(Source: European Parliament)
Date Submitted: 12 May 2021
Question for written answer E-002616/2021
to the Commission
Simona Baldassarre (ID), Francesca Donato (ID), Marco Dreosto (ID), Rosanna Conte (ID), Isabella Tovaglieri (ID)
Subject: Rise in arrivals of irregular migrants in Italy and resumption of negotiations on the Malta agreements
Between 9 and 10 May 2021 alone, 2 182 migrants landed in Lampedusa(1), serving solely to exacerbate a trend which had already been accelerating in comparison with previous years(2). The island is also grappling with an increase in SARS-Cov-2 infections.
This situation only adds pressure on the Italian justice and reception system, which even before the pandemic began was already facing an increase in appeals against decisions by asylum authorities(3).
Commissioner Schinas recently acknowledged the EU’s failure with regard to returns and announced that the European Board and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex) would deal with returns by ‘increasing cooperation with third countries on readmission, improving our governance framework, equipping Frontex with a new mandate on returns, and appointing an EU return coordinator’(4). However, no mention has been made regarding the handling of asylum applications and applicants.
In the light of the above:
1. Will the Commission resume discussions regarding the Malta agreements(5), under which the ‘country of first entry’ principle laid down in the Dublin III Regulation was to be overturned?
2. Will the Commission take action to address the very real emergency that has arisen in Lampedusa and if so, what action will it take?
(6) This question is supported by a Member other than the authors: Gianantonio Da Re (ID)