The Italian Government has rejected the ongoing criticism by HRW and others of its push back policy.
News24 reports that Interior undersecretary Alfredo Mantovano, stated that Italian authorities “have never denied” intercepted migrants the right to ask for asylum. “Each operation to escort migrants back to Libya lasted more than 10 hours during which none of the people involved, asked to be recognised as refugees, nor did they say they were fleeing from persecution in their countries of origin, Mantovano said.”
According to Mantovano, 757 migrants have been forcibly returned to Libya between May 6 and August 30.
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