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    Migrants wait to disembark from the Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) ship Phoenix in the Sicilian port town of Augusta, Italy, Sunday, June 7, 2015

    President of Italy's Region Urges Mayors to Not Accept Rescued Migrants

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    Lombardy region president called on local mayors not to accept any more of the asylum seekers illegally crossing the Mediterranean.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The president of Italy's northern Lombardy region on Sunday called on local mayors not to accept any more of the asylum seekers illegally crossing the Mediterranean.

    “The mayors of Lombardy must refuse to accept illegal immigrants sent from Rome. If you take them, cut regional contributions,” Roberto Maroni wrote in his Twitter on Sunday.

    The president also pledged to send letters to local administrations starting on Monday in attempt to persuade them to refuse accommodation to migrants.

    The local authorities in Italy have the power to agree to participate in the reception of asylum seekers and receive financing from the government.

    Italy faces serious problems with undocumented immigration from Northern Africa and the Middle East. Hundreds of people are rescued by the Italian Navy every month in the Mediterranean between Sicily and the coasts of Libya and Tunisia.

    At least 50,000 migrants have reportedly arrived to Italy since the beginning of the year that is an about 10-percent increase comparing to the same period in 2014.

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