I claim 'blackmail' on EU - Salvini

2 new charges are 'medals' says interior minister

(ANSA) - Venice, August 30 - Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said Thursday he claimed responsibility for "blackmailing" the EU over the Diciotti coast guard ship carrying 177 Eritrean migrants.
    "I learn there is a new crime, blackmailing the European Union, I didn't know it existed," Salvini told a press conference on the probe into the Diciotti where he is accused of illegal arrest and abuse of office, among other things.
    "They are changing the penal code for the interior minister.
    Good, I claim responsibility for blackmailing the European Union".
    Informed that he had been charged with two further alleged crimes, Salvini said "these two new charges are medals" The EU refused to take in the migrants, who were eventually taken in by Italian bishops, Ireland and Albania.
    Salvini added that Italy was "assessing" whether to continue the EU's Sophia mission which currently lands all rescued migrants in Italian ports.


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