MEPs on the Civil Liberties Committee will assess the situation of migrants and refugees in Italy and the ways forward as summer approaches.
Italy is the main arrival point to the EU for migrants and asylum-seekers since the closure of the Balkan route and the EU-Turkey deal. In the first five months of 2017, already more than 60 000 people have arrived on its shores, compared to 47 883 in the same period in 2016. This trend is likely to continue during the warmer months, when better conditions at sea lead to more people attempting to cross over.
According to UNHCR data, 1 778 persons have died or gone missing trying to reach Italy since the beginning of the year.
Under the two emergency relocation decisions adopted in 2015, 39 600 asylum-seekers likely to be granted refugee status should be transferred from Italy to other EU countries, but so far only 6 502 have been moved (as of 2 June).
Children in migration
In a separate debate, MEPs will discuss with the European Commission how to better protect children in migration. Around 30% of persons seeking asylum in the EU in 2015 and 2016 were children, many of them travelling alone. Unaccompanied minors face a higher risk of becoming victims of violence, trafficking and exploitation.