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Italy “Watchdogs of the Union”

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  • Italy Italy "Watchdogs of the Union"


“As a result of increased controls at sea off the Moroccan and West-African coasts, the number of boats trying to reach Southern Europe from Libya and Tunisia has been growing steadily… Those which reach European coasts face new dangers. Since the beginning of the 2000s, countries at the southern border of the EU have set up detention centres, under various names, to contain migrants landing on their shores… In Italy, there are two types of site: “filtering” centres which are generally located on frontier islands and “detention centres for the removal of migrants” established on the mainland and to which migrants on the islands are transferred. This typology can be applied to centres located on the islands of Sicily and Lampedusa (Italy), in which migrants are detained during the identification phase before being transferred to the mainland, either to be released as asylum seekers or, most often, to be placed in other camps for a longer period of time before being deported. However, in January 2009, in response to the increase in arrivals on Sicily and Lampedusa, the Italian authorities used the migrant reception centre in Lampedusa as an “identification and and deportation centre”. The name of this centre clearly indicates its new functions: the detention of migrants for the purposes of their removal from Italy. […]”

Extract from MIGREUROP, “Atlas des migrants en Europe. Géographie critique des politiques migratoires” (Atlas on Migrants in Europe. Critical geography of migration policies), Armand Colin, September 2009, pp. 82-83 (in French only).



Date(s) of publication: 2009
Author(s): Migreurop
Credits: Atlas des Migrants en Europe. Géographie critique des politiques migratoires