Sunday, 5/4/2020 | 12:05 UTC+0
Libyan Newswire

Written question – Migrants and crude oil: a deal between Italy and Malta – E-003611/2017

Leaks published in the Maltese and Italian press have fuelled suspicions that a tacit agreement was reached last year between the former Italian Prime Minister, Matteo Renzi, and the current Maltese Prime Minister, Joseph Muscat, who is being investigated as part of the Panama Papers enquiry.

That agreement is said to have ended the dispute between Italy and Malta over oil rights in the seas to the south-east of Sicily, effectively giving Italy the green light to conduct geological surveys and drilling there. In exchange, a formal undertaking is said to have been given — and this is supported by the huge imbalance between the two countries in terms of migrant arrivals — not to involve Malta in recovery operations regarding the many migrants crossing from Libya to Europe.

If there really is such an agreement, as that facts would suggest, this would constitute a serious breach of the agreements on the admission of migrants, which are binding on all the Member States.

Will the Commission check whether such an agreement has been reached and, if so, say what it is considering to prevent this blatant violation of EU rules?