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Parliamentary questions
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26 May 2016
Question for written answer P-004213-16
to the Commission
Rule 130
Nicola Caputo (S&D)

 Subject:  Floating hotspots
 Answer in writing 

A few days ago Italy proposed to the Commission that floating hotspots be set up to process migrants. Hotspots of this kind would enable identification procedures to be carried out directly on board, streamlining the return system and stopping people from running away. This is a type of arrangement in which humanitarian agencies and Frontex could assist.

The hotspots now in operation, in Italy in particular, do not have the capacity to cope with the summer months. Mobile hotspots might thus offer an innovative solution for the immediate future.

Floating hotspots, however, pose problems, not only from the legal point of view and as regards respect for human rights, but also when it comes to identification, a process that can sometimes take weeks, if not months. The medical care needed in the meantime for people who arrive critically ill is difficult enough to organise on dry land. Doctors without Borders has repeatedly drawn attention to that point and reluctantly decided to withdraw from a number of reception centres in Italy and Greece because the conditions are such that it cannot do its job.

In the light of the foregoing, and of the fact that it is considering what technical and legal means could be employed to implement the floating hotspot proposal, what action, if any, will the Commission take on the Italian proposal?

Original language of question: IT 
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