Italy’s Interior Minister Matteo Salvini is under formal investigation for “kidnapping” after he refused to allow illegal migrants to disembark from a ship at a Sicilian port. The investigation, a political move aimed at blunting the government’s hardline stance on illegal immigration, has threatened to plunge Italy into a constitutional crisis over the separation of powers.
Sicilian Prosecutor Luigi Patronaggio said that the investigation into Salvini, the head of the anti-immigration League party, would focus on “kidnapping, illegal arrest and the abuse of power.”
“If he wants to interrogate me or even arrest me because I defend the borders and security of my country, I am proud and I look forward to it with open arms. Being investigated for defending the rights of Italians is a disgrace.”
Salvini added that we could not be “cowed” and that he would not reserve his right to immunity from prosecution: “I only did my job as minister and I am ready to do it again.”