Bilateral relations between Malta and Italy have been discussed at the highest level during talks in Rome between President George Vella and President Sergio Mattarella, literally when another migrant-related issue between the two countries was ongoing at sea.
President Vella reiterated that both countries should not waste time in altercations between them.
Diplomatic relations between Malta and Italy started on the day Malta became independent, 21 September of 1964. On the third day of his visit to Rome, President George Vella had a meeting with his Italian counterpart, President Sergio Mattarella at the Quirinale Palace.
During this first meeting between President Vella and President Mattarella, discussions were held on themes common to both countries. Chief among these was immigration, the situation in Africa and in Libya, and the unity which is needed in the European Union. In comments after the meeting, which was also attended by Italy’s Foreign Minister Luigi di Maio, President Vella insisted there is much more which unites both countries.
“It is important that these two neighbouring countries do not waste time in altercations, but rather, should join forces in order to show unity to European countries, and also to press them for decisions to be taken in the interests of southern European countries in the Mediterranean.”
In light of the latest issue between Malta and Italy regarding a group of 90 migrants, TVM asked President Vella whether this matter had been discussed in his meeting with President Mattarella.
“Once again we have been faced with an ad hoc problem of a number of people about whom a decision has to be taken. When we were going in to the meeting, we were informed the issue had been sorted out, with a number of countries agreeing to land these persons and even to share them out. Regarding the presence of Minister di Maio, yes, the new Foreign Minister was in attendance, and we invited him to visit Malta at the first opportunity and hold discussions with his counterpart, just as we invited all other Italian Government Ministers to visit at every opportunity.”
President Vella stated that efforts are called for towards a permanent solution for the relocation of these migrants who end up on our shores.
President Vella is being accompanied during this visit by Education Minister Evarist Bartolo and by Malta’s Ambassador in Rome, Vanessa Frazier.
Il-Guardia Costiera m’għandhiex permess iddaħħal 90 immigrant f’Malta