‘Don’t THREATEN us’ EU in chaos as Italy launches FURIOUS attack on Austria over migration

Monday, July 24, 2017
By Paul Martin

ITALY today launched an extraordinary attack on its neighbour Austria as the political strain of the migration crisis once more revealed deep splits within the EU.

By NICK GUTTERIDGE, BRUSSELS CORRESPONDENT
Express.co.uk
Mon, Jul 24, 2017

In a sign of worsening relations between Rome and other member states prime minister Paolo Gentiloni lashed out against “threats and lessons” and begged the rest of Europe to intervene.

The Italian leader accused Vienna of abandoning its responsibilities as an EU country after Austrian leaders said they would deploy the army to their Alpine border to stop migrants crossing it.

In recent days Italy has become increasingly desperate as it struggles to cope with a huge influx of up to 10,000 migrants arriving at its ports every single day.

Last week its deputy foreign minister himself threatened to issue all newly arriving asylum seekers with temporary visas, allowing them to travel northwards towards Austria and Germany.

That suggestion prompted a furious response from other member states, with the bitter infighting and division as stark over migration as the bloc’s unity is surprising on Brexit.

Speaking today Mr Gentiloni, a caretaker prime minister following the ousting of Matteo Renzi, injected more poison into the European debate with a vicious attack on Austria.

He raged: “We shall not accept lessons and still less threats such as those we have heard from our neighbours in recent days. We are doing our duty and expect the whole of Europe to do the same alongside Italy.”

Last week Italy took the highly unusual step of summoning a fellow EU country’s ambassador when it called the Austrian representative in to explain his country’s actions.

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