Inside Story

How will Italy deal with the latest refugee arrivals?

The new right-wing government blocks migrants from disembarking at a Sicilian port.

Italy’s new right-wing prime minister is facing the first major test of her election pledge to block migrant rescue ships.

Giorgia Meloni’s government is refusing to allow hundreds of people to disembark at the Sicilian port of Catania.

Some women, children and sick people have been allowed off charity rescue vessels.

However, the government says the men on board are not vulnerable, and must leave Italian waters.

Humanitarian organisations are suing the Italian government, arguing that anyone rescued is considered vulnerable and entitled to protection under international law.

About 87,000 people have arrived in Italy by sea so far this year – up from 55,000 in 2021.

How will Meloni deal with the standoff?

And how much responsibility lies with the rest of the European Union?

Presenter: Dareen Abughaida


Cecilia Sottilotta – Assistant professor of political science at University for Foreigners of Perugia

Hermine Poschmann – Mission Lifeline board member

Valerie Fargion – Professor of the politics of European integration at the University of Florence