The Address | Benghazi – Libya
ROME – Italian far-right Interior Minister, Matteo Salvini, on Wednesday met dozens of African migrants, recently evacuated from Libya by the UN, and sought to reassure them that Italy is “a welcoming, generous and supportive country”.
Salvini, who has been at the forefront of the country’s hard-line approach to immigration, met the group of 51 migrants, mostly families or women with children, on the tarmac at a military airport near Rome.
“This is a demonstration that Italy is a welcoming, generous and supportive country, where I have been entrusted with the duty of bringing back some rules and order.”
Almost all those in the group of 32 adults and 19 children came from Horn of Africa nations Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia, as well as Sudan. They will be placed with host families in Italy by a Catholic association.
The migrants were among more than 2,300 vulnerable people who have been evacuated from Libya via Niger by the UN refugee agency, UNHCR, since December.
Accogliere i bimbi che scappano davvero dalla guerra, come ho fatto stamattina a Roma, per me è un piacere. Espellere i troppi clandestini che la guerra ce la portano in Italia per me è un dovere. #PraticadiMare pic.twitter.com/DQK4HQexcX
— Matteo Salvini (@matteosalvinimi) November 14, 2018