Austrian officials have said they are ready to deploy armored vehicles to the border crossing to prevent migrants reaching Austria
Refugees march through Upper Austria's town of Braunau am Inn, near Germany's southeastern border, photo: Wikimedia
20 of July 2017 18:36:56
VIENNA – Austrian Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz on Thursday urged his Italian counterpart not to allow migrants arriving by boat to Italy's islands to travel on to the mainland, declaring that "being saved in the Mediterranean cannot be connected with a ticket to Central Europe."After meeting with Italy's Angelino Alfano, Kurz told reporters that Austria expects an end to the practice of transporting migrants to the mainland by ferry. He said that if it continues, more migrants will make their way northward to other EU countries, "increasing overload for Central Europe," encouraging others to undertake the perilous journey from Northern Africa and further lining the pockets of human traffickers.Kurz suggested instead that migrants be stopped at the EU's outer boundaries and returned after receiving humanitarian and medical help. He acknowledged that he and Alfano were "not yet agreed" but described the atmosphere of the talks as "reasonable" considering ongoing tensions between the two countries over the migrant issue.