Foreigners living legally in Italy could in future be deported if they threaten public order or national security, according to a draft government decree seen by Reuters.
The measure, which will be adopted at a cabinet meeting tomorrow, is part of a response to a sharp increase in the number of boat arrivals from North Africa. The right-wing government of Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni has promised to work in this direction, BTA recalls.
The draft decree also states that during a large influx of migrants, reception centers will be able to accommodate up to twice the number of people they are designed for.
As authorities struggle to accommodate the growing number of unaccompanied migrant children, the project allows minors over the age of 16 to be detained in adult reception centers for up to three months.
It also provides for the deportation of migrants who falsely claim to be minors, and gives police wider powers to assess the age of arriving migrants using body measurements and X-rays.
Once approved by the cabinet, the decree will go into effect immediately, but will have to be ratified by parliament within two months, otherwise it will lapse. During the ratification, it can be supplemented and changed.
Meloni’s governing coalition came to power last year promising to curb immigration. But last year more than 133,000 migrants arrived across the Mediterranean, compared with just under 70,000 for the same period in 2022.