Wrong to equate migration with terrorism, says Italian Minister
Rome : It is "misleading" to directly link immigration with terrorism, while terrorism is "closely connected" to a failure to integrate migrants in host societies, Italian Interior Minister Marco Minniti said on Friday.
"While no direct relationship exists between immigration and terrorism, there a close connection between terrorism and a failure to integrate," Minniti said in an interview published in Adnkronos' (AKI) Book of Facts.
"This is shown most clearly by (the 2015 deadly Islamist attack on satirical French weekly) Charlie Hebdo, and events over the past two years," Minniti went on, referring to terror attacks carried out in several European countries.
Immigration is a crucial phenomenon in world history which is not limited to brief time periods and an issue which needs to be "managed", he argued.
"We need to take into account the rights of the those who are fleeing war and hunger, but also the sentiment of Italians," he said.
"When we talk of taking people in, we need to keep clearly in mind that this is constrained by our capacity to integrate."
Immigration is one of the most sensitive issues facing politicians in Italy where over 600,000 asylum-seekers and refugees have arrived from North Africa by boat in the past three years.
Some on the right in Italy blame the Mediterranean crossings for bringing common criminals, terrorism and even disease into Italy and claim the country does not have the resources to integrate the influx of migrants.