Tag Archives: Naval blockade

Italian Minister Proposes that NATO Ships Block Migrant Boats from Departing Libya

Italian Interior Minister Roberto Maroni is calling for the NATO maritime blockade of Libya to be expanded to block the departure of migrant boats attempting to flee Libya.  Maroni said “I think you can intervene immediately by asking the NATO vessels already along the Libyan coast … to also be used to block people from leaving … This can be done right away if NATO agrees. It would be a solution to the problem.”

Click here and here for articles.

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Filed under Italy, Libya, Mediterranean, News

Frontex Will Not Participate in Joint Italian-French Naval Patrols Along Tunisian Coast

Frontex Director Ilkka Laitinen said at a Friday press conference that Frontex will not participate in the naval patrols that France and Italy have said they will carry out along the Tunisian coast in an effort to block the departures of migrant boats from Tunisia.  Laitinen said Frontex could not enter Tunisian territorial waters without a specific agreement with Tunisia and no such agreement exists.

A statement on the Italian Foreign Ministry web site seems to suggest that France and Italy are contemplating joint naval patrols along the North African coast in general, not just along the Tunisian coast: France and Italy will conduct patrols “on the North African coast, especially Tunisia, to stop the departures.”  (sulle coste nordafricane, in particolare quelle tunisine, per bloccare le partenze.)

Click here (IT) for article.

Click here (IT) for statement on Italian Foreign Ministry web site.

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Filed under France, Frontex, Italy, Mediterranean, News, Tunisia

France and Italy Agree to Joint Naval Patrols Along Tunisian Coast to Block Migrant Departures

French and Italian Interior Ministers Claude Guéant and Roberto Maroni today have announced an agreement for “joint air and naval patrols” off the Tunisian coast to block departures from Tunisia. Guéant is quoted by Le Figaro as saying that the new measures would be carried out with assistance from Frontex, but the report is unclear whether he is calling for Frontex participation or announcing that Frontex will participate.

While there are no specifics details being reported about this agreement, it seems to constitute a new push-back practice where there will be little or no opportunity for asylum seekers or other persons of concern to be identified and afforded the protection to which they are entitled.  It is simply not possible to intercept vessels at sea and adequately identify who is on board an overcrowded migrant boat and assess whether international protection is needed by anyone on board.

Click here (FR), here (IT) and here (FR) for articles.

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Filed under France, Frontex, General, Italy, Mediterranean, News, Tunisia

Blog du Monde Diplo: une démonstration de force navale; une petite armada converge en direction des côtes libyennes

Du blog de “Défense en ligne” écrit par Philippe Leymarie: “Guerre civile en Libye et options militaries.”

“Alors que le Conseil de sécurité de l’ONU réuni vendredi dernier a décidé d’un embargo sur les armes et de sanctions contre le régime Kadhafi, la violence de la répression en Libye a incité les pays européens, qui n’envisagent pas d’intervention militaire pour le moment, à entamer une démonstration de force… navale, qui a pris forme en quelques heures, avec une célérité inhabituelle. Une petite armada converge en direction des côtes libyennes, dans ce qui pourrait, à terme, devenir une véritable opération, mêlant la dissuasion à l’humanitaire. …

“Dans la pratique, le déploiement de cette petite armada pourrait également constituer un cordon de sécurité afin d’éviter une fuite en masse par la mer de Libyens ou d’immigrés africains vers l’Europe – donnant plus de consistance à l’opération de surveillance « Hermès », entamée (sous la pression notamment de l’Italie, en première ligne) par l’agence européenne Frontex….”

Cliquez ici pour l’article complet.

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Filed under Analysis, European Union, Frontex, Libya, Mediterranean, United Nations