Italy Failing to Fingerprint Migrants

“Italy not fingerprinting migrants despite law,” by Colleen Barry for the Associated Press:

Every day, boatloads of refugees arrive on Italian shores. European Union law requires Italy to fingerprint them, so that if they apply for asylum in another country they can be sent back to their port of entry. Instead, Italy is letting thousands of migrants slip quietly into northern Europe, with no record of their time in Italy.

An Associated Press analysis of EU and Italian data suggests that as many as a quarter of the migrants who should have been fingerprinted in the first half of the year were not. While EU law required Italy to share fingerprints for about 56,700 of the migrants, only 43,382 sets were sent.

Even accounting for possible delays in sending fingerprints to Brussels, it’s clear that thousands of refugees are slipping through the cracks.

“It’s a very serious problem,” European Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstroem told the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter this week. After complaints from member states, the European Commission is studying whether Italy is living up to its EU obligations. The Italian government didn’t respond to repeated requests for comment…

 

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