• Italy's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Letta demands Libya action on boat migrants

AFP · 4 Jul 2013, 16:23

Published: 04 Jul 2013 16:23 GMT+02:00

But Zeidan said he expected more assistance from Europe to counter migration and asked Italy for help in reinforcing its southern land border in the Sahara where many migrants come from.

Letta and Zeidan also agreed on a programme for Italy to help train 5,000 new army and police personnel in an effort to undermine militias, which wrought havoc in Libya in recent months.

Letta said an international conference would be held in Rome before the end of the year on increasing assistance for Libya.

Italy is Libya's former colonial ruler and enjoyed close ties with dictator Muammar Qaddafi, although it then supported Nato action to depose him.

"The flux of illegal immigrants is a very high priority for us. It is important that you assist in curbing this phenomenon, which has unfortunately become uncontrollable," Letta said.

Thousands of migrants have arrived in Italy this year - a sharp increase from 2012 - and the rate of arrivals has increased sharply in recent weeks because of improving weather conditions.

Zeidan said Italy had agreed to supply Libya with military equipment, vehicles, and small arms to help boost the armed forces against militias.

Story continues below…

On immigration, he said: "All these efforts to counter immigration require the active partnership of all the countries in the northern Mediterranean".

Thousands of economic migrants and refugees have arrived in Italy on boats from Libya since the start of the anti-Kadhafi revolution in 2011, which led to an easing of maritime border controls. 

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Conte theatrics a boon for Italy, and Chelsea fans
Antonio Conte during the Italy-Spain game on Monday. Photo: Philppe Lopez/AFP

A "great" Italian feat toppled Spain at Euro 2016, but Antonio Conte's touchline theatrics were just as dramatic for Italy and Chelsea fans during an emphatic 2-0 win over the defending champions.

Five essential Bud Spencer films to watch this weekend
Italian actor, Bud Spencer, passed away on Monday. Photo: Screenshot/YouTube

If you're looking to remember - or even discover - the delights of the late Bud Spencer's work, here are five films you should definitely watch.

Six of the best places to visit within easy reach of Rome
Gubbio (L) and Norcia (R). Photos: Angus Kirk/EricHuybrechts

Rome has a lot to offer, but if you're looking for variety or simply want a break away from the city, there's a treasure trove of towns within easy reach.

Euro 2016
Germany boss to banish Italy 'curse' in quarter-final clash
Germany coach Joachim Loew says Germany do not have an Italian 'curse'. Photo: Patrik Stollarz/AFP

Germany have lost their last eight matches to Italy at the knockout stages of major tournaments.

Bangladesh official charged over Italian's murder
Tavella's body leaves Bangladesh. Photo: Munir Az Zaman/AFP

The Italian aid worker was shot last September.

Brexit
Italy, Germany and France vow 'new impulse' for EU
In a joint statement, Francois Hollande, Angela Merkel and Matteo Renzi have promised to reorder the EU. Photo: John MacDougall/AFP

"There is a great need to remodel the European project in the coming years."

Naples mobsters bring home dough from bread sales
Photo: Rick Gordon

From supermarkets to street vendors, all bread suppliers in the northern neighbourhoods of Naples have been forced to buy their products from bakeries controlled by the Camorra mafia - or else face the consequences.

Spaghetti western film star Bud Spencer dies
The late Bud Spencer in Cannes in 1985. Photo: Dominque Faget Ralph Gatti/AFP

Italian actor Bud Spencer, who starred in a string of spaghetti westerns, died on Monday in Rome aged 86, his family confirmed.

Euro 2016
Italy dump Spain out of Euro 2016 with 2-0 win
Graziano Pelle scored the second goal. Photo: Vincenzo Pinto/AFP

Giorgio Chiellini and Graziano Pelle scored the goals as Italy exacted revenge for their Euro 2012 final hammering by dumping Spain out of Euro 2016 with a deserved 2-0 last 16 win in Paris on Monday.

British business owners in Italy feel Brexit jitters
Photos: AFP

British business owners in Italy are rightly feeling jittery over Brexit.

Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
National
How to get Italian citizenship (or at least stay forever)
Sponsored Article
Education abroad: How to find an international school
Politics
Where does Britain's exit from the EU leave Italy?
Politics
Has the time come for Italy’s Five Star Movement to shine?
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Society
Why Italy must change after young woman’s brutal murder
Politics
Is Italy's Five Star up to the challenge of running Rome?
Culture
Six of the most bizarre Italian foods everyone should try
Culture
Italian restaurant crowned the best in the world
Sponsored Article
Avoid hidden fees when sending money overseas
Travel
Ten breathtaking Italian gems you've never heard of
National
Eritrean held in Italy denies being trafficking kingpin
Health
Italian man 'turns French' after brain injury
Travel
Six reasons why South Tyrol will absolutely blow your mind
National
Why Italy's facing another tough summer
Photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP
Politics
Five reasons Rome's mayoral elections actually matter
Travel
Ten Airbnb apartments where you'll feel at home in Rome
Politics
Quiz: Silvio Berlusconi versus Donald Trump - who said it?
National
Crew who sunk with WWII sub 'wanted to be found': relative
Culture
Why the average ancient Roman worker was dead by 30
Did a Nazi official save Ponte Vecchio from destruction?
National
How the brutal murder of an anti-mafia hero altered Sicily
Travel
These are the best beaches within easy reach of Rome
National
Why Italians are falling out of love with the EU
Business & Money
Foreign, female and a self-made success in arduous Italy
2,528
jobs available