Italy and Slovenia have reached an understanding to continue joint patrols at their border, according to the Trieste police commissioner. League politicians praised these plans.
Joint border patrols between Italy and Slovenia will begin soon and "the hope is that they will curb entrances" of migrants into Italy, Trieste police commissioner Irene Tittoni said Tuesday.
A memorandum of intentions, "which also establishes operating procedures," has been "signed by the government in Rome and now," she added, "it will be signed by their Slovenian counterparts and will be implemented as soon as it is finalized."
Since the beginning of the year, Tittoni said, the region had witnessed "a slight increase in migration flows."
League praises joint border patrol plans
"The news of the starting of joint Italian-Slovenian patrols is good news," Marco Dreosto -- the regional coordinator of the League party and a member of the European Parliament -- said in a statement. Now it is necessary to be as strict as possible to curb the entrances of undocumented migrants into our region," Dreosto said.
Trieste is located on the border in northeastern Italy, in the region of Friuli Venezia Giulia (FVG). Many migrants reaching Italy via the Balkan route through southeastern Europe arrive there. The far-right, anti-migrant League party is influential and has a large following in FVG. The region's current president is the League's Massimiliano Fedriga, who has repeatedly called for harsher border control measures.
Earlier this year, an Italian court ruled that the readmission procedure enacted at the eastern Italian border based on an accord between Italy and Slovenia in 1996 was illegitimate, making it more difficult for FVG authorities to send back migrants and refugees once they cross into Italy from Slovenia.