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European humanitarian corridor from Libya, Conte's interest in the proposal by Sant'Egidio and Protestant churches: "Very important initiative, Italy is available"

June 19 2019

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Replying to a joint letter from the President of the Community of Sant'Egidio, Professor Marco Impagliazzo, and the President of the Federation of Evangelical Churches in Italy (FCEI), pastor Luca Maria Negro, the Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, expressed interest in THE proposal put forward for a European humanitarian corridor from Libya.
 
For proposers it should be a new legal and safe access route in Europe for 50,000 refugees who, through a quota system, should find acceptance in the European countries available to participate in the project. Sharing the opinion on the situation of "serious and persistent instability" in Libya, the premier reiterates the need for a greater common commitment of European countries in favor of refugees and migrants. In this sense, he cites as a model the "good practice" of the Italian "humanitarian corridors" launched, with a totally self-financed system, by the Community of Sant'Egidio, by the Federation of Evangelical Churches in Italy and by the Waldensian Table. This process, since February 2016, has guaranteed legal and safe access in Italy to over 1,500 people from Lebanon and has inspired other agreements in Italy, France, Belgium and Andorra, which have allowed a total arrival of over 2,500 refugees in Europe.
 
Hence the commitment of the Prime Minister to deepen with the Union partners the proposal for a "European humanitarian corridor" in the "shared awareness of having to cope in a coordinated manner with the current emergency through appropriate operational and financial instruments". Italy would take on a share of refugees to welcome and would ask all European countries to do the same.
 
“We thank the premier for the timely response to our project and we trust that the work of an inter-ministerial committee that will start its realization will soon start - comments the pastor Luca M. Negro -. The first-person presentation of the premier attests to the interest with which the government has implemented our proposal which, moreover, confirms the support expressed several times by the deputy minister Hon. Emanuela Del Re, to the program of "humanitarian corridors" launched in 2016. As Protestants - the president of the FCEI underlines - we are already committed to asking our sister churches in Europe to press on their governments to concretely support the Italian proposal ".
 
“The humanitarian corridors - states the president of Sant'Egidio, Marco Impagliazzo - have united Italy in a civil society project capable of saving from the traffickers of death and integrating into the European civil and social fabric. The interest expressed by the Prime Minister, Giuseppe Conte, with regard to the proposal to establish a European humanitarian corridor from Libya is an important recognition of a model that has already proven to work: if implemented, as we hope, it will serve to protect those who currently, in a country plagued by a civil war that has no end, it risks its life and is subjected every day to torture and harassment of all kinds. It would be for Europe an act of civilization in defense of human rights, up to the role we believe it must take on in the world ".