The alleged attacker was placed in quarantine and then asked to leave the country but traveled to France
The 21-year-old Tunisian suspected of killing three people at Notre-Dame Basilica in Nice arrived in France via the Italian island of Lampedusa only a few weeks ago, according to sources close to the investigation
The revelation that the suspect, named Brahim Aouissaoui, landed on the small island south of Sicily at the end of September sparked a major political dispute in Italy
Italian authorities have reportedly placed him in quarantine for two weeks aboard a ship, the Rhapsody He was interviewed by immigration officials on October 8, Italian media reported last night But they released him, gave him a deportation order and told him to leave Italy
Instead, he traveled to the southern town of Bari in the Puglia region, and from there traveled to France in early October
It was reported that the French authorities identified him from a document given to him by the Italian Red Cross
Matteo Salvini, the leader of the League party, accused the government of being too lax on immigration controls and called for the resignation of Interior Minister Luciana Lamorgese
« If it is confirmed that the attacker landed in Lampedusa in September, then went to Bari and then fled, we will ask for the resignation of the interior minister, » said Mr. Salvini, who was Minister of the Interior and Deputy Prime Minister until last summer, when his coalition government collapsed
The government has also been criticized by Giorgia Meloni, the leader of the far-right Brothers of Italy party
« If the information is confirmed it will be extremely serious and put our country at risk of (diplomatic) isolation, » she said.
She asked for clarifications from the Minister of the Interior, as well as Giuseppe Conte, the Prime Minister, and Luigi di Maio, the Minister of Foreign Affairs
MPs from a center-right party called Cambiamo, or Let’s Change, said Italy and the rest of Europe deserved to know if other ‘lone wolves’ ready to carry out terrorist attacks had passed through Lampedusa
There has been an increase in the number of Tunisians trying to reach Italy by sea in recent months, as the coronavirus crisis worsens an already dire economic situation in the country
MEPs asked if other « potential attackers » were arriving under the « false pretext of being desperate migrants » This is not the first time that a terrorist has crossed Lampedusa from North Africa
Anis Amri, the Tunisian who killed 12 people in a truck attack on a Christmas market in Berlin in 2016, had passed through the island in 2011
He applied for asylum, claiming to be a minor After the Berlin attack, he fled Germany and was shot dead by police in northern Italy
Tens of thousands of asylum seekers have passed through Lampedusa over the years, but only a tiny minority have been ‘bad apples’, said Pietro Bartolo, an Italian doctor who worked on the island for 25 years old and who is now a central MEP -Left Democratic Party
« We know that unfortunately every now and then there are hot heads among those who arrive, but fortunately these are extreme cases, » he said « Anis Amri has also been through Lampedusa, but this does not mean that all migrants who arrive on the island are terrorists »
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Tunisia, France, Nice
News from around the world – GB – Reports that a Nice attacker passed through Lampedusa spark political unrest in Italy
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