Status: 28/09/2023, 15:43 p.m.
By: Felix Durach
Is Scholz promoting illegal immigration? Meloni's coalition partner is making serious accusations against Germany – and drawing a crude Nazi comparison.
Rome – The debate about illegal migration in Italy is becoming much more acute. After several thousand refugees arrived on the Italian Mediterranean island of Lampedusa in recent weeks, the tone of the Italian far-right government led by Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni is once again intensifying. Last week, the Italian head of government called on the United Nations to wage a "merciless war" against smugglers in order to deal with the situation in the Mediterranean. Italy will fight "on the front line".
Because of refugee drama on Lampedusa: Meloni's coalition partner rails against Germany
In the meantime, the German government in Berlin is also increasingly being targeted by the Italian government – because of the refugee drama on Lampedusa. The most recent verbal derailment was made by Andrea Crippa of the right-wing populist Lega. The 37-year-old accused Germany of deliberately promoting illegal migration in order to harm the Italian government.
"They are trying to destabilize the government by funding NGOs, by filling us with illegal immigrants and weakening the consensus of the center-right parties in Italy," the Italian news agency Ansa quotes the MP as saying.
"80 years ago, the German government decided to invade other states with the army, but that went wrong. Now it is financing the invasion of illegal immigrants in order to destabilize the governments that the Social Democrats do not like," Crippa said, referring to Nazi Germany.
The Italian politician Andrea Crippa of the right-wing populist Lega caused a stir with a tasteless comparison. © imago-images
Post-fascists in the government: Meloni's partner, of all people, rumbles with Nazi comparison
What Crippa overlooked or deliberately ignored in his verbal attack was that an invasion of Italy by Nazi Germany did not take place during the Nazi era. On the contrary. Fascist Italy under Benito Mussolini was one of the most important allies of Hitler's Germany and part of the so-called Axis powers.
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Meloni's Fratelli d' Italia party, of all people, is repeatedly regarded by various political scientists as the spiritual successor to Mussolini's policies. Meloni himself, according to his own statements, has a "carefree relationship with fascism" and a flame in the party logo of the "Brothers of Italy" still refers to the still burning spirit of the Duces.
Since the last parliamentary elections in Italy, Meloni has led a three-party coalition consisting of the post-fascist Fratelli d'Italia, the right-wing populist Lega and the right-wing conservative Forza Italia.
Refugee crisis in Italy: Meloni addresses letter to Chancellor Scholz
With his criticism of the content, Crippa is nevertheless in line with Prime Minister Meloni. The Italian Prime Minister addressed a letter to German Chancellor Olaf Scholz at the weekend. In it, she complained about German funds for organizations that provide refugee aid in Italy.
"I was astonished to learn that your government, without coordinating with the Italian government, decided to allocate significant funds to non-governmental organizations working on the reception of irregular migrants on Italian territory and in rescue in the Mediterranean," Meloni wrote in her letter to Scholz. EU countries that want to help Italy would be better off focusing on "structural solutions" such as working with transit countries to stop arrivals.
A spokesman for the Federal Foreign Office in Berlin pointed out that the Federal Government is currently implementing financial support set by the Bundestag. This would support both civilian sea rescue at sea and projects on land for people rescued from distress at sea. Organizations worthy of support have been selected, and now funding will follow.
EU summit in Brussels – Interior ministers want to further tighten asylum law
Meanwhile, the European Union will discuss the final building block of the EU asylum reform in Brussels on Thursday. As announced on Wednesday, Germany has abandoned its blockade stance in the debate on the so-called crisis regulation. Interior Minister Nancy Faeser (SPD) announced on Thursday that she would vote in favor of the proposal.
The Crisis Regulation is a central element of the planned EU asylum reform, which is intended, among other things, to limit unwanted migration. For example, in the event of a particularly sharp increase in migration, it should be possible to extend the period during which people can be detained under conditions similar to those of detention. In addition, the circle of people who are eligible for the planned strict border procedures could be enlarged. (FD with dpa)