Thursday 20 June 2019

Salvini gets a dressing down after remarks on 'slaves'

Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini. Photo: Reuters
Italian Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini. Photo: Reuters

Nick Squires

Italy's interior minister has again clashed with the European establishment, earning a vulgar rebuke from Luxembourg's foreign minister over his views on immigration.

Matteo Salvini addressed a migration conference in Vienna yesterday and outlined his opposition to Italy accepting any more migrants and refugees crossing the Mediterranean from Libya and Tunisia.

"I've heard colleagues say we need immigration because the population of Europe is getting older, but I have a completely different viewpoint," said Mr Salvini, who heads the anti-immigration League party. "I believe that I'm in government in order to see that our young people have the number of children that they used to a few years ago and not to transplant the best of Africa's youth to Europe.

"Maybe in Luxembourg they need to do this, but in Italy we need to help people have more children, rather than bring in modern-day slaves to replace the children we're not having."

Luxembourg's foreign minister Jean Asselborn, who was sitting close by, started mumbling "Blah, blah, blah."

Mr Salvini asked the minister if he could be allowed to finish his address, but Mr Asselborn, who is also Luxembourg's minister for immigration, interjected in French.

"In Luxembourg, sir, we have welcomed thousands of Italians who came to work in our country, as migrants, so that you in Italy had money for your children."

He finished with the words "Merde, alors". (© Daily Telegraph London)

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