According to the information, Faeser called her counterparts from Italy, Spain and France as well as EU Interior Commissioner Ylva Johansson about the situation in Lampedusa. The conversation should continue on Monday.

Germany is living up to its humanitarian responsibility by accepting and caring for a large number of refugees, said the spokesman for the Interior Ministry in Berlin after the telephone call. This also applies to recordings via the voluntary solidarity mechanism. “This has not been suspended,” emphasized the spokesman. “There are currently no interviews taking place to prepare for further takeovers from Italy, but these can be resumed at any time.”

The reason for this action is, according to the information, “that Italy is not fulfilling the obligation to readmit those seeking protection under the Dublin rules”. This was also discussed during the conversation and should be discussed further shortly.

Around 8,500 refugees arrived on boats in Lampedusa within three days this week. However, the island’s refugee reception center can only accommodate fewer than 400 people. The island, located just 145 kilometers from the North African coast, has long been an important destination for migrants heading to Europe. The approximately 8,500 migrants who arrived this week exceed the population of Lampedusa.

As part of the voluntary takeover, Germany had agreed to take in up to 3,500 people seeking protection from countries on the EU’s southern external border, where a particularly large number of migrants are currently arriving. According to the Federal Ministry of the Interior, more than 1,700 people seeking protection have been admitted so far – around a thousand of them from Italy.