NEWS

Italy claims deal for Cyprus migrant camp

Barely three days after EU leaders meeting in Halkidiki rejected a controversial British plan to set up «protection zones» outside the EU to stem the flow of illegal immigrants toward Europe, Italy yesterday announced a deal with Cyprus to build a detention center on the island for migrants caught at sea. In an interview with Il Corriere della Sera newspaper, Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini said he supported the creation of transit camps in the Mediterranean for illegal immigrants. He said Italy proposes setting up a maritime control center for the southeast Mediterranean on Cyprus and «a center, the size of which has yet to be determined, to house clandestine migrants stopped at sea until they are sent back to their home countries… Cyprus has said ‘yes’ to the plan.» Italy assumes the rotating EU presidency next week.