Right wing extremists are controlling migration and neighbourhood policies in the north and are imposing their security approach in the south Mediterranean

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The Italian minister of defense, who is a member of the right wing’s five stars movement, declared that the Italian military forces are arriving soon to the South of Tunisia to participate in surveying the maritime borders in order to restrict migratory flows in the context of a bilateral cooperation with the Maghreb countries’ governments.

The declaration coincided with the speech of the Italian vice prime minister and minister of interior, Matteo Salvini, who asked, in his letter to his Tunisian counterpart, to tighter border control because of the increase of migratory flows towards Italy, and demanded to speed up the deportation and forced repatriation processes.

Informed of these statements, the Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights – FTDES:

1. Expresses his utmost dismay at these racist statements of the Italian Ministers which violate the Human Rights of the Migrants and which threaten the sovereignty of Tunisia over its borders.
2. Is surprised by the official silence of the Tunisian government and claims explanations to the national public about the bilateral cooperation against irregular migration
3. Calls on the Security and Defense Committee of the Assembly of the Representatives of the People to interrogate the Ministers of Interior and Defense about these information
4. Holds the extreme rights groups of Italy and Europe responsible for the repetitive human tragedies that are happening in the Mediterranean as a result of the restrictions on the rescue operations.

These statements just gave us more determination to work and cooperate with our partners in Europe, and especially in Italy, to advocate for the rights of migrants. The civil and social forces are committed to work for establishing peace and security in the Mediterranean basin and to cooperate while prioritizing the values of peace and solidarity.

Tunis, 10 /07/2019
The Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights
Abderrahmane Hedhili

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