Italian police arrest three smugglers related to immigration drama

Italian police have arrested three people believed to be migrant smugglers who died in a boating accident off the coast of southern Italy last Sunday. This was reported by the Reuters news agency.

One man from Turkey and two men from Pakistan. The passengers of the sinking ship were to pay about 8,000 euros per person for the trip to three people.

The confirmed death toll in the boat crash has risen again. Rescuers pulled a dead man from the sea and the number of bodies recovered so far has reached 64. Among the dead are 14 children.

26,000 deaths since 2014

The boat, carrying migrants, mostly from Afghanistan, Iran, Somalia and Syria, sank near Steccato di Cutro, a seaside resort on Calabria’s east coast. The boat had left the port of Izmir in western Turkey.

More than 80 people survived the boat crash. There is great uncertainty about the number of people on board. There were about 120 people on board, according to the Coast Guard, but probably 200, according to a few people. The body search continues.

In the past, migrants have often washed up in southern Italy trying to cross the so-called Mediterranean route to Europe. According to the International Organization for Migration, around 26,000 people have died or gone missing in the Mediterranean since 2014.

European Asylum Treaty

Sunday’s shipwreck has reignited the political debate over immigration in the country. Italian Prime Minister Meloni said he wanted to stop the increase in the number of migrants arriving on Italian shores since he took office in September.

The EU is currently working on a comprehensive migration and asylum agreement that includes agreements on border procedures and combating human trafficking.

EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has previously said in response to the shipwreck that efforts to reach an immigration and asylum deal need to be stepped up. According to him, the same goes for an action plan where the EU wants to reduce illegal immigration.

Source: NOS