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article imageItaly prosecutors to drop migrants case against Salvini

By AFP     Nov 1, 2018 in World

Italy's Interior Minister Matteo Salvini was celebrating Thursday after prosecutors prepared to drop a case against him for his tough line against a group of rescued migrants.

Sicilian prosecutors have called for charges to be dropped against him over his refusal to let more than 100 migrants leave a coastguard ship, Salvini said in a Facebook video.

The investigating magistrate can still choose to go ahead with the case, for "illegal confinement, illegal arrest and abuse of power", but they normally follow the prosecutors' recommendations.

Matteo Salvini welcomed the news that prosecutors in Sicily were not going forward with the case aga...
Matteo Salvini welcomed the news that prosecutors in Sicily were not going forward with the case against him
Alberto PIZZOLI, AFP

Salvini expressed his "joy and satisfaction" at the decision, reading out the prosecutors' letter notifying him of their decision in the video.

The case was opened in August after the Italian coastguard ship Diciotti rescued 170 migrants.

Most of them were refused immediate permission to disembark in Italy and were forced to stay on board offshore for more than 10 days as Salvini pressed other EU nations to take them in.

Salvini, also deputy prime minister and leader of the far-right League party and a junior partner in the ruling coalition, only let the migrants land after other countries, including Albania and Ireland, agreed to take them.

The affair covered two legal jurisdictions, Palermo and Catania, as the Diciotti moved around the Sicilian coast. Palermo's prosecutors decided to drop the case against Salvini in late October.

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