New humanitarian corridors from Lesvos to Italy: an agreement was signed for the reception and integration of 300 refugees

On September 22nd, at 5.30 p.m. at the Viminale, Ministry of Interior, an agreement was signed between the Community of Sant'Egidio and the Italian State for the admission into our country of 300 refugees from Greece mainly from the island of Lesvos, where a fire broke out a few days ago, making the lives of thousands of asylum seekers impossible. The memorandum of understanding is founded on two pillars: reception and integration. It states that the arrival "in a legal and safe way of applicants for international protection will be facilitated, with particular attention to the most vulnerable for whom a path of social, cultural and linguistic inclusion and stabilisation is urgently needed". The project is scheduled to last 18 months and will give priority to the relocation of families and unaccompanied minors.

Great satisfaction was expressed by the signatories of the agreement. It is a first Italian response to the European Union's appeal for the relocation of refugees residing in Lesvos and in other areas of Greece.

'The humanitarian corridors show a face of Italy which looks towards the future collaborating with other European countries and responds to humanitarian crises with a sense of humanity developing paths of integration', Marco Impagliazzo, President of the Community of Sant'Egidio, commented on the agreement, 'It is Italy of citizens who do not resign themselves to the suffering of those fleeing serious humanitarian crises. Indeed, they want to give a response based on acceptance and legality.  For a long time now, our country has shown it has confidence in this reception model that actively involves civil society. A door has been opened to asylum seekers, who are living in dramatic circumstances in Lesvos, to hope for a new life in Italy and in our continent.'