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Italy lauds Tunisia's efforts to curb illegal migration

A handout picture provided by the Tunisian Presidency Press Service shows President Kais Saied welcoming Italy's Interior Minister Matteo Piantedosi in Tunis on May 15, 2023.   -  
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Italy's Interior minister Matteo Piantedosi praised Tunisia's efforts against irregular migration.

The comments by the Italian minister follow Monday's visit to the North African country.

The Italian official met with his Tunisian counterpart and also had a meeting with Tunisian President Kais Saied.

The leaders discussed the situation in the Mediterranean where crossings have intensified since Saied made a fiery speech last February claiming illegal immigration was a demographic threat to Tunisia.

According to the Tunisian Forum for Economic and Social Rights (FTDES), a migrant support group, more than 200 people have drowned in a series of shipwrecks since the start of the year.

Dozens more remain missing off Tunisia's coast after the sinking of multiple boats.

In early April, Rome's interior ministry said more than 14,000 migrants had arrived in Italy since the beginning of the year, a number that is significantly higher than in previous years.

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