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2024 | OriginalPaper | Chapter

4. The Implementation of the Hotspot Approach in Italy

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Abstract

By drawing on ten months of fieldwork, this chapter focuses on the implementation of the hotspot approach in Sicily between the end of 2015 and the end of 2018 and discusses the main implications of the adoption of this restrictive policy tool in relation to the previous system. The hotspot practices implemented in Sicily during this period contributed to increasing the differentiation of legal statuses attributed to migrants, as well as the stratification of migrant access to territory and rights. However, while the hotspot approach was framed by the European Commission and Italian authorities as a new tool, the main vision underpinning the introduction of the hotspot system was based on the migration management paradigm. Moreover, hotspot procedures have mostly been based on the bureaucratic routines of migration control that have characterized southern EU border management at least since the beginning of 2000s: in this sense, despite the migration and refugee crisis rhetoric, the dichotomy forced (to be accommodated) versus voluntary (to be repatriated) migrants continued to underpin migration management practices at the southern border of Italy.

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Footnotes
1
Italian Chamber of Deputies (2016e); Interviews with: Emergency team, EM1, Siracusa, July 2018; MEDU team, ME2, Ragusa, July 2018; Red Cross coordinator, RCO1, Catania, April 2018; Red Cross coordinator, RCO2, Ragusa, June 2018; TDH operator, TDH2, Pozzallo, June 2018.
 
2
In 2017, the rate of fingerprinting and complete photo-identification was around 100%, in line with the trend started the previous year (Italian Chamber of Deputies, 2016e, 2017).
 
3
CIR et al. (2018); Informal conversations with ASGI experts, Catania, September 2018; Interview with migration lawyer, ML1, Catania, December 2017; Oxfam (2016).
 
5
Interviews with: Red Cross coordinator, RCO2, Ragusa, June 2018; TDH operator, TDH2, Pozzallo, June 2018; activist, ACT1, Messina, April 2018; Informal conversations with ASGI experts, Catania, September 2018.
 
6
Oxfam (2016); Interview with migration lawyer, ML1, Catania, December 2017.
 
7
“Following what the interviewees suggested, the migration management system returned to be focused on reception and asylum procedures, to which the majority of migrants were directed.”
 
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Metadata
Title
The Implementation of the Hotspot Approach in Italy
Author
Roberto Calarco
Copyright Year
2024
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-40504-4_4

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