Italian Premier Mario Draghi in the Senate in Rome, on June 23, 2021 | Photo: ANSA/Riccardo Antimiani
Italian Premier Mario Draghi in the Senate in Rome, on June 23, 2021 | Photo: ANSA/Riccardo Antimiani

Italy's Parliament approved a majority motion on the communications of Premier Mario Draghi during the European Council meeting on June 24 and 25. Italy has been lobbying for greater burden-sharing in sea rescues with the EU for several years.

Ships bearing the flags of other nations should take rescued migrants to their own ports in accordance with the safe port rule - this is the motion that the Italian parliament voted in favour of on July 23.

"It is fundamental, pending an overall reform of immigration containment policies and the Dublin rule, to ensure that flag states of European ships carrying out rescue operations at sea cooperate in selecting a port of landing and take responsibility to host rescued people, in the respect of international conventions and sea law," the motion read.

Read more: Over 10,000 migrant arrivals in Italy in 2021

The majority motion was approved by by the Lower House and the Senate as becoming part of the communications of Premier Mario Draghi to be put forward at the European Council.

Draghi, however, said not to expect "triumphant results" in Europe. "The negotiation is long, we must be persistent and present," he explained in his speech ahead of the Senate's vote.

Read more: EU states ponder how to cope with Lampedusa landings

Two pledges with major consequences

Concerning migrant rescue operations, the majority document also contained two pledges. The first one specified that the government is first of all engaged "with regard to rescue operations at sea (SAR), in working for a change of perspective aimed at realizing a European policy for humanitarian corridors, intensifying efforts to counter human trafficking networks so as to ensure the controlled and legal management of departures in the Mediterranean towards EU territory, and guaranteeing the respect of international conventions on sea rescue and the full functionality and operability of European maritime rescue systems."

The second pledge for the executive was to "continue to work quickly for a structured, stable and permanent mechanism of mandatory redistribution of migrants who reach the territory of EU border member states, with the aim of ensuring an effective management of arrivals through the exam of asylum applications, the reception of those who have a right to international protection and repatriations to be carried out quickly and according to set times through common procedures for those who have no right to remain in Europe."

Read more: UNICEF wants citizenship for all children born in Italy


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