Italy-Austria tension over border troops at Brenner Pass
Austrian Defense Minister Hans Peter Doskozil told the daily Kronen Zeitung that troops could go to Brenner’s pass.
He said four Pandur armored vehicles had been sent to the Tyrol region and that 750 soldiers were on alert.
Austria border controls with Hungary and Slovenia. But in other places, it adheres to the system of opening of the borders of the EU.
Mr. Doskozil said a pass busy alpine military deployment, on the Italian border, is “indispensable so that the flow Italy [across the Mediterranean] does not decline.”
Later, the Italian Foreign Ministry said it had summoned Austrian ambassador Rene Pollitzer “after the Austrian government’s statement on the deployment of troops to the Brenner.”
The gangs of people smugglers exploited violence and chaos in Libya. The shortest journey from Libya to Italy is about 460 kilometers (290 miles).
Around 85 000 migrants and refugees have arrived in Italy in the first half of this year, across the Mediterranean. The UN refugee agency, UNHCR, said about 20% of the first half of 2016.
The Italian governor of South Tyrol, Arno Kompatscher, tried to calm tensions. He said that Austria had issued similar warnings about the border earlier, and the situation remains “quiet and stable.”
Austria is preparing for the October general election, said Mr Kompatscher. It is expected that the Austrian party of freedom against immigration (FPO) do a survey.
Italy warned that the current arrivals of migrants is unsustainable and could even close their ports and salvage ships to prevent aid agencies.
Map of the border with Austria
Brenner’s passage is now considered a potential point of migration, as the influx to Italy so far this year is greater than last year.
.Amnesty International has rejected the plan. “The outsourcing of more and more responsibility in the search and rescue on the coastguard of Libya is irresponsible, ineffective and resulting in more deaths at sea,” he said.
“By allowing the Libyan coastguard to intercept ships and return them to Libya, the EU shows a blatant disregard for the lives of refugees and migrants.”
The Schengen system – free movement on most European borders – has been overwhelmed by the influx of immigrants and refugees by 2015.
They reached central Europe through the Balkans – and the most sought after asylum in Germany. Since then, controls closer to the borders in the Balkans have reduced the number to the north of Greece.
Most of the influx was in Austria by Hungary. Many of those who arrived by train or on foot were refugees from Syria, Iraq and other areas of conflict.
So far, 101,000 immigrants arrived in Europe in 2017 for the Mediterranean and according to the latest data, 2,247 people died or are lost at sea.