View Q&A: Lampedusa crisis shows migration is not an emergency — it is a structural issue

2 months ago 38

The opinions expressed successful this nonfiction are those of the writer and bash not correspond successful immoderate mode the editorial presumption of Euronews.

Following the latest spike successful vessel arrivals to the Italian land of Lampedusa, Euronews View spoke to MEP Pietro Bartolo astir what migration means for Italy and Europe and whether the continent tin find a viable and just mode to lick the crisis.

The tiny Italian land of Lampedusa made planetary headlines again past week aft a surge successful vessel arrivals to Europe saw astatine slightest 11,560 radical onshore connected its shores.

The 6,000 resident-strong island, which is person to the Tunisian seashore than mainland Italy has been the focal constituent of migrant routes for decades. 

However, the latest spike successful arrivals was seen arsenic yet different motion of a increasing predicament for Europe, with Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen some visiting Lampedusa to pledge a doubling down connected the continent's efforts to curb it.

At the aforesaid time, critics judge a factual solution to the humanitarian crisis, which has go a highly divisive contented for astir Europeans, is yet to beryllium found. 

Meanwhile, thousands stay stranded successful what has been described arsenic hard conditions, with galore much expected to marque the aforesaid unsafe travel crossed the Mediterranean Sea.

Euronews View spoke to MEP Pietro Bartolo (PD, S&D), a surgeon and Lampedusa autochthonal who served arsenic the main aesculapian serviceman for refugees and migrants arriving connected the land for 27 years, astir perceptions of migrant arrivals successful Italy and Europe, merits of the existent governmental attack to the ever-unfolding situation, and whether Europe tin find a viable and just mode to lick the crisis.

Euronews View: For galore people, particularly journalists and activists, the latest quality retired of Lampedusa felt similar a 'Groundhog Day'-type scenario, wherever nary substance what is done, the communicative repeats itself. What is it that we person failed to learn?

Pietro Bartolo: The communicative that seems to beryllium repeating, successful my opinion, is that of atrocious agreements with 3rd countries from which migrants depart oregon transit. 

We person ample acquisition showing that reducing migration and asylum policies to externalising borders and the alleged “strategic partnerships”, particularly if signed with countries that person mediocre quality rights and regularisation of instrumentality records — from Turkey to Libya, and present Tunisia — does not lick the problem. 

On the contrary, the numbers archer america that departures are increasing. Moreover, it is simply a disgraceful strategy that goes against the values of the Union, giving a blank cheque to dictators successful bid to support the travel pat closed, without questioning what the destiny of those who privation to scope Europe for a hopefully amended aboriginal volition be. 

Therefore, if determination is 1 information that we person not learned, it is that the EU indispensable alteration its attack erstwhile shaping its migration policies; we request ineligible channels of entry.

Euronews View: You were calved successful Lampedusa and cognize the land assemblage rather well. Has the absorption of Italians surviving connected the land to radical arriving changed implicit time?

Pietro Bartolo: The inhabitants of Lampedusa person ever been a exemplary of solidarity and hospitality. 

Even aft the precocious fig of arrivals of the past days connected the island, a existent solidarity contention has taken place, with radical who person opened their homes to feed, invited and temporarily assistance migrants. 

This has ever been the attack of the Lampedusans. Due to its geographical location, Lampedusa is the archetypal portion of onshore betwixt Africa and Europe, a earthy landing spot for those crossing the Mediterranean, some for flocks of birds and for radical fleeing war, hunger and violence. 

This marked the individuality of those who unrecorded here. In addition, Lampedusa is simply a onshore of fishermen, and for fishermen everything that comes from the oversea is welcome.

Euronews View: In your opinion, what are Europeans failing to spot oregon don’t recognize erstwhile it comes to refugees and migrants arriving connected the continent?

Pietro Bartolo: They bash not realise that migration is not an exigency but thing structural, it has ever happened and is an integral portion of the past of humanity.

Those who fly governmental and spiritual persecution, hunger and poorness successful hunt of a amended future, person the close to try. 

People indispensable recognize that this epochal situation of our period is not lone a occupation concerning countries bordering the Mediterranean, but indispensable beryllium dealt with astatine the European level. 

Only a sharing of work and a corporate effort by each 27 subordinate states volition pb to factual results.

Euronews View: How bash you remark connected past week's sojourn of European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Italy PM Giorgia Meloni to the island?

Pietro Bartolo: Unfortunately, it's 1 of galore symbolic visits that does not pb to factual proposals connected however to woody with a melodramatic situation, and we've had plentifulness of these visits successful the past decade. 

I was greatly disappointed by the European Commission President's enactment for the EU-Tunisia agreement.

Euronews View: How bash you consciousness astir people, including experts and journalists extracurricular of Italy, believing that astir Italians hold with Meloni’s stance connected migration?

Pietro Bartolo: I bash not deliberation things are that way. They privation america to judge that this is the information but it is not, and my predetermination serves arsenic a benignant of impervious to the contrary. 

During the past European predetermination campaign, I spoke lone astir migration, bearing witnesser to what I saw and touched first-hand successful the 30 years successful which I was a doctor, acting arsenic the liable medic who gave migrants their archetypal aesculapian introspection aft disembarking connected the island. 

If you adhd up the votes successful the 2 constituencies successful which I was elected, I had the most, 2nd successful wide fig of preferences lone to [the far-right Lega enactment person Matteo] Salvini, who topped the database successful each constituencies. 

I volition besides archer you different thing: successful the encounters I person implicit the play successful schools with students but besides successful different contexts passim Italy, determination is ever idiosyncratic who approaches and tells me: "Thank you, listening to you was enlightening. They've taught america a full antithetic communicative these years." 

We indispensable ne'er halt telling the information astir the migration phenomenon. Not lone for those who question to rebuild their lives but besides for Europe and its citizens.

Euronews View: What would beryllium a just solution to the issue, and is it realistic to expect the governmental volition needed to instrumentality it pursuing the upcoming European predetermination successful 2024?

Pietro Bartolo: I anticipation that determination volition beryllium a important betterment successful this legislature already. I realise it whitethorn look unrealistic, but we cannot discourage ourselves and springiness up connected specified an important issue. 

The EU has the accidental to amend erstwhile and for each the Dublin Regulation which puts the value of managing migration disproportionately connected the countries of archetypal entry.

Ultraconservatives and Eurosceptics similar to substance fears and hatred of migrants for electoral reasons. 

They speech astir amerciable immigration, pretending not to spot that contiguous those who get successful Europe are chiefly asylum seekers, radical fleeing wars, unit oregon earthy calamities. 

The negotiations to o.k. the caller Pact connected Migration are underway, and I volition bash everything I tin to bring astir a alteration of people towards solidarity and sharing of responsibility, and to find a mode to mediate it that goes successful the absorption that progressive forces person been hoping for for years now. 

We request to alteration the paradigm and code the migration improvement with a humane, rational, and semipermanent approach.

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