11:52 GMT +317 November 2019
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    Migrants sleep on the rocks by the sea in Ventimiglia, at the border between Italy and France, early Monday, June 15, 2015

    Italy to Ask EU for More Support Amid Neighbors Tightening Migrant Policy

    © AFP 2019 / Massimo Pinca
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    Rome is preparing an appeal to the EU authorities asking for additional support in handling new waves of immigrants, who might not be able to travel further into the bloc due to some of Italy’s neighbors hardening their migration policies, media outlets reported Friday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) On Wednesday, Italy's Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni condemned Austria for taking unilateral steps to close a border pass with Italy, saying such an approach would not resolve the migrant crisis.

    "We won’t look away if someone is breaking the rules. We are confident they won’t," Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said Friday, as quoted by The Wall Street Journal.

    Austria has been tightening controls on its southern border with Italy. On Saturday, Austrian Defense Minister Hans Peter Doskozil announced a plan to deploy troops to the Brenner Pass area, which divides Austria and Italy.

    Earlier this week, the European Commission sent a letter to Vienna demanding an explanation for the construction of a new border-control post at the Brenner Pass. The Commission said it was "very concerned" about the move, as it could represent a violation of the Schengen Agreement.

    The UN refugee agency estimates that over 17,000 migrants arrived in Italy in the first three months of 2016 after crossing the Mediterranean Sea. Most of them are from the Middle East and North Africa.

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    border, migrants, European Union, Paolo Gentiloni, Italy
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