Europe ‘reaches limit’: As 11,000 a week arrive in Lampedusa, Germany says ‘we’re at capacity’

Migrants wait at the port on the Sicilian island of Lampedusa, Italy.

Migrants have fled in their thousands to the Italian island of Lampedusa

Georgia Pearce

By Georgia Pearce

Published: 22/09/2023

- 09:26

Updated: 22/09/2023

- 14:59

Steinmeier said Germany is 'at the limit of its capacity' on migration

German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier has called for a 'fair distribution of migrants' and stronger border controls, following a visit to Italy to meet with his counterpart, Sergio Mattarella.

The visit follows a surge in African migrants arriving on the Italian island of Lampedusa, as latest figures revealed more than 11,000 migrants landed in a week on the island, which has an average population of 7,000 people.

Speaking to Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera on Wednesday, Steinmeier said Germany, like Italy, ‘is at the limit of its capacity’.

Steinmeier added: “Italy and Germany have heavy loads to bear. Germany has already accepted more than 1,000 refugees from Italy within the previous voluntary solidarity mechanism, more than any other European state.


“In the negotiations on the common European asylum system, a permanent solidarity mechanism should also be created so that it does not remain solely with this voluntary system.”

The German President added that 'stronger controls and surveillance at our external borders' is needed.

Speaking on GB News show Farage, Polish MEP Dominik Tarczyński said he would refuse to accept migrants coming through Italy into Poland, if his party was to win the next election.

Nigel Farage asked: "If your party wins the general election, are you saying you won't take migrants that are coming through Italy?"

“Of course not, we won't. What we're saying is send them back, simple as that.

“Poland is the only country in the European Union which we haven't had even one terrorist attack. We don't have stabbings, we don't have rapes, we don't have all these really dangerous behaviours from migrants, illegal migrants.

“So our policy is very straight, zero tolerance. We built a beautiful wall on our border with Belarus, and there's no way anyone would enter Poland. When you see the data from Eurostat, not ours, from European Union, Poland is the safest country in Europe.”

Farage responded: "That is true."

Dominik Tarczynski MEP speaks to Nigel Farage on GB News.

Dominik Tarczynski MEP has said 'there is no way anyone would enter Poland'

GB News

Tarczyński recently visited the Italian island of Lampedusa, to witness the impact of the migrant influx on the island.

Tarczyński said of the visit: "That was scary, I must say that was really scary, especially that we visited this camp during the night and you know, I did not expect so many. 18,000 people within a week. And the camp was prepared for 400 people.

“And this madness has to be stopped. It will be stopped by Poland. We stopped it. We we never let anyone to come illegally to Poland.

"When you see Polish people in London, we are here legally, we pay taxes, we contribute to the society and if anyone would like to come to Poland legally, you're very welcome."

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