Salvini’s Border Control Migrant Policy Reduces Arrivals by 95 Percent


Italy has seen a radical drop in migrant arrivals in January under the migration policy of populist interior minister Matteo Salvini, down around 95 percent compared to January 2018.

The interior minister compared the approach of the previous government under the left-wing Democratic Party of January 2018 with the populist coalition of the Five Star Movement and the League with Salvini saying, “the data shows that the Democratic Party had not blocked arrivals,” Il Giornale reports.

The official data showed that 3,176 illegal immigrants arrived in Italy in January  2018 under the leadership of the Democratic Party which had told Italians they were actively working to reduce the number of landings and had reduced the number somewhat compared to 2017.

Much of the credit for the reduction of illegal migrant arrivals rests on the policy of Salvini who, last year, told migrant transport NGOs that they would not be welcome to dock in Italian ports and drop off migrants in what many referred to a “taxi service.”

“For the first time, returns are superior to arrivals,” Salvini said following the release of the new statistics. After closing the ports, Salvini and the Italian government have focused on increasing deportations and, as a result, have seen more deportations of radical Islamists than any other country in Europe in 2018.

While the number of migrants has been significantly reduced both in the Mediterranean and on the land border with Slovenia, the migrant transport NGO Sea Watch has continued attempts to land in Italy, with their vessel Sea Watch-3 currently off the coast of Syracuse with 47 migrants on board.

Last week, Salvini ordered Italian authorities to investigate the vessel and the NGO and demanded that the Dutch government take in the migrants due to the fact the ship had been flying under the flag of the Netherlands.

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


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