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Albania can only process migrants rescued in international waters - Tajani

21 novembre 2023 | 14.47
LETTURA: 1 minuti


Only migrants who are rescued in international waters will have their asylum claims processed at camps which Italy is to build in Albania, foreign minister Antonio Tajani said on Tuesday.

"Solely those migrants aboard vessels belonging to Italy's authorities, who were rescued in international waters, will be allowed to disembark at an Albanian port," Tajani told the lower house of parliament.

Tajani was briefing MPs on a deal signed in Rome on 6 November by premier Giorgia Meloni and her Albanian counterpart Edi Rama allowing Italy to locate two migrant processing camps in Albania.

Under the deal Italy will build and run two centres, which it hopes will be operational by Spring - each processing the asylum claims of up to 3,000 boat migrants a month.

"Vulnerable" migrants including pregnant women and children will not be sent to the processing centres in Albania, which Tajani said will respect Italian, European and international law.

A primary reception and identification centre will be located in the port of Shengjin in southern Albania. International protection applications will be handled at Gjader military base, some 30 kilometres away - where migrants whose asylum claims are rejected will be deported from, Tajani said.

"The procedures will be Italian ones and will be entirely carried out by Italy's administrative and judicial authorities," Tajani stated.

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