Tue. Jun 18th, 2024

Inside Italy’s new Rwanda-style migrant plan as von der Leyen urged to copy it for EU

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jun9,2024

Italy new migration strategy, the Mattei Plan, has garnered attention for its similarities to the UK’s Rwanda scheme. Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni’s visits to Libya and the Mattei Plan’s focus on migration have led to speculation that other EU countries might adopt similar strategies.

However, the Mattei Plan aims to address broader socio-economic conditions in Africa, moving beyond just migration concerns.

Maddalena Procopio, a Senior Policy Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations, highlighted that the Mattei Plan represents a strategic shift in Italy’s relations with Africa, integrating development objectives with industry interests. This approach challenges traditional European aid narratives and aims to create sustainable economic partnerships.

EU’s migration policies have come under scrutiny as debates intensify over the possibility of adopting Rwanda-like schemes for managing asylum seekers.

Criticism has been directed at European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen for her handling of migration deals and the lack of comprehensive involvement of all commissioners in these decisions.

Nicolas Schmit, the lead candidate for the Party of European Socialists (PES) in the upcoming EU elections, expressed openness to externalising migration procedures if they are “under European control.” However, he also criticised von der Leyen for not involving the entire College of Commissioners in discussions on third-country migration deals.

In mid-May, 15 EU countries sent a letter to the European Commission, advocating for the externalisation of migration procedures to neighbouring countries to address irregular migration flows into the EU. This initiative, led by the Socialist-led Danish government, stands in contrast to the PES manifesto, which opposes EU border externalisation.

“If externalising means that sometimes you could organise, but under our control, under European control, migration procedures before people come into the European Union, that could be discussed,” Schmit said, emphasising the need for human rights to be respected in any such procedures.

Currently, the EU relies on individual deals with countries like Tunisia, Mauritania, and Egypt to manage migration influxes, without externalising asylum procedures. Schmit criticised these deals, arguing that they were made without thorough consultation among the 27 commissioners and lacked proper human rights guarantees.

Von der Leyen has faced further criticism for her management style. Schmit pointed out that commissioners were often notified last-minute about significant decisions, limiting their ability to engage in meaningful discussions.

He said: “This is not the management style I would approve and pursue because we are apparently a geopolitical Commission, but we are not a political Commission.”

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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