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Minister Moavero Milanesi is on a mission to Vienna

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Enzo Moavero Milanesi, will be in Vienna tomorrow afternoon to participate in an informal meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Ministers, also known as Gymnich. At Italy’s request, migration in the Mediterranean will be among the topics of discussion, including also the EU “Sophia” Mission and a review of its “Operational Plan”. The Italian position was crafted through close coordination between the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Defence and Interior ahead of the meetings of the Political and Security Committee (PSC), which were held in Brussels these past few weeks. Italy has put forward a proposal which calls for an identification mechanism to be implemented at a given number of ports of disembarkation in different European countries. The mechanism’s operational management would be entrusted to a coordination cell, which would be set up in Brussels or elsewhere. The Italian government hopes that when sea rescue operations are carried out in any part of the Mediterranean, the distribution of migrants would take place with EU support, also in financial terms.
 
During the Vienna informal meeting, Minister Moavero will be able to call to the attention of his colleagues the importance that a higher level of EU support to the countries of origin and transit would have in order to promote peace, security and economic growth. It would thus make local populations not be forced to leave.
 
Italy acknowledges the fundamental contribution of the “Sophia” Mission in countering the trafficking in human beings, and would also be ready to consider a potential expansion of its tasks in the Western Mediterranean.