France calls for second meeting to tackle Italy's migrant crisis
Lampedusa Mayor Filippo Mannino calls the situation one that is "close to the point of no return."
A second emergency meeting has been called by French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin regarding the migration crisis on the Italian island of Lampedusa, according to French broadcaster BFMTV on Saturday.
A day prior, the first emergency meeting was conducted in an effort to pinpoint France's plan of action to tackle the situation, BFMTV said, noting that Darmanin discussed the matter with his German and Italian counterparts, during which he stressed the urgency to amplify efforts to prevent the migrants' departure to Europe.
Last Wednesday, Lampedusa declared a state of emergency following the arrival of over 8,000 undocumented migrants on the island in a time span of three days - that number exceeds the island's permanent population.
Lampedusa Mayor Filippo Mannino called the situation one that is "close to the point of no return."
The island happens to be the landing point for tens of thousands of migrants each year from North Africa.
A Paris-Rome problem
France and Italy have had quite a row over the matter.
Back in May, Darmanin said that Italy's Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni "is incapable of resolving the migration problems" faced by her country, risking a new debacle between Paris and Rome.
"Madame Meloni, a far-right government chosen by friends of Mme Marine Le Pen, is incapable of resolving the migration problems on the back of which she was elected," Darmanin told RMC radio.
To put out the potential fire between the two, French Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne said two days later that Italy is an "essential partner," to Paris, calling on calm dialogue with Rome.
"Italy is an essential partner to France... our relationship is founded on mutual respect," Borne said late Friday. "We will prioritize consultation and calm dialogue to continue to work together."