Italian Populist Salvini’s Migrant Decree Passes Senate Despite Coalition ‘Rebel’ Protest


The migration and security decree that will see humanitarian residency permits scrapped has been passed by the Italian Senate despite a brief rebellion by several Five Star Movement senators.

The decree passed with 163 senators in support, 59 against, and 19 who abstained from the vote with the majority of the support coming from populist Interior Minister Matteo Salvini’s League Party and their coalition partners in the Five Star Movement (M5S), Il Giornale reports.

Four members of the M5S, Gregorio De Falco, Elena Fattori, Paola Nugnes, and Matteo Mantero, opposed the decree and broke with leader Luigi Di Maio.

Due to the behaviour of the four senators, the movement is now looking at an internal investigation of their actions, which sought to disrupt the passage of the decree, though all four abstained from the vote.

“All these irregular immigrants will not disappear by decree,” Paola Nugnes said while Elena Fattori added: “This decree is against everything in the Five Star programme.”

Five Star Movement politician Stefano Patuanelli expressed how seriously the movement was examining the actions of the senators saying, “This is a particularly serious behaviour given that it was a vote of confidence in the government.”

At worst, the senators could face expulsion from the movement but senator Gregorio De Falco said he was not worried saying, ” I have no fear, I have done my duty,” and noted that he had heard of his possible expulsion from the Italian media, rather than hearing anything from Mr Di Maio.

“I believe this provision will bring harm because it violates constitutional provisions and does not achieve the effects that it would like to achieve to bring more security. This was not written in the government contract,” he added.

The alliance between the M5S and the League has come under some strain in recent months as the popularity of Matteo Salvini and his party have exploded and surpassed their coalition partners.

While Salvini has been successful with banning NGO vessels from Italian ports, the programme of Di Maio, specifically the basic income policy, has been much harder to implement and has seen severe pushback from the European Union which recently rejected the Italian budget.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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