The global establishment goes out of its way to increase the number of immigrants in Europe. If the governments of particular states such as Hungary, Poland or now Italy oppose these activities, they are internationally marginalized. And if an action goes counter to the plans of international organizations, they are trying to come up with new legal interpretations that will be binding on the parties concerned. All of which is only possible because the EU member countries have relinquished their sovereignty and transferred it to international institutions.
The Italian authorities, which are increasingly strongly opposed to the pressure from the UN and non-governmental organizations, are effectively counteracting the stream of African immigrants. Thus Italy ceases to be the main migratory route to Europe, which is not accepted by the NGOs or international institutions. Still, events from the end of July related to the Italian ship Asseo Ventotto, as described below, make migration from Europe legal and even desirable.
In recent years it was Italy that has accepted most of the refugees. The new government has decided to take more decisive steps to stop this process. The first measure was the gradual closure of ports to non-governmental organizations transporting “refugees”. The second is to send undocumented immigrants back to Africa.
The resolve of the Italian authorities have triggered attacks by non-governmental organizations that have hailed the government’s representatives as fascists, simply because they want to pursue the will of voters and restrict immigration. 3)both the UN and the EU question the legality of Rome’s actions. The Italian-Libyan cooperation is also under international pressure because it aims to redirect the refugees heading for Italy to Libya. The European Court of Human Rights has submitted the procedures for the prevention of migration in the Mediterranean to scrutiny.
The event from last month provides a precedent. On 30th of July, the Asso Ventotto, a ship owned by Augusta Offshore, the Italian oil and gas production company, picked up, only 6.4 km from Libyan territorial waters, a dinghy with more than a hundred immigrants, which was required by the maritime law. Acting on the advice of the Libyan Coast Guard, the Asso Ventotto crew transported the rescued to the nearest port, i.e. to Tripoli. It was like throwing down the gauntlet to non-governmental organizations such as Amnesty International, Sea-Watch or activists of Proactiva Open Arms, which suggested that the safest place for survivors would be Europe.
UN diplomats couldn’t agree more. The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, stated on Twitter that the transfer of survivors to countries where human rights might be violated may constitute a violation of international standards. Thus, according to Grandi, immigrants which were picked up near Libyan territorial waters should be transported to countries where they will find a safe haven, to Italy, Greece or Spain, rather than to Libya, which is recognized by both the UN and the EU as a country dangerous for the survivors.
The government in Rome, however, indicates that Italy is not responsible for the fate of fleeing Africans who are not in Italian territorial waters. Such an attitude, however, does not appeal to world diplomats. Considering the fact that the UN and the EU single-handedly define a list of dangerous states, the above situation opens the ground for a new interpretation of international law. In the light of it, the UN agenda may give the green light to non-governmental organizations to pick up “refugees” from international waters and transport them to Europe as well as impose an obligation on all ships, including private ones, to transport immigrants not to the nearest but to the safest ports, never mind the cost of the shipment or the interrupted works. Closing ports to ships carrying immigrants will also be banned.
The Gefira Foundation has already proven that international institutions are seeking to manage the migration flow and they maintain that this movement of people is “unavoidable, desirable and necessary”. We expect the Italian government to continue to oppose the recommendations of global organizations, which will probably entail its isolation on the European political stage. The steps taken by the authorities in Rome will cause African smugglers to move from Libya to Morocco. The short distance from the Black Continent and the moral support from the UN and the EU will turn Spain into an ideal destination instead of Italy. Thus, the Iberian Peninsula will become the largest window for immigrants who want to get to Europe.