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Italy to press for indigent expulsions

Aug. 23, 2010 at 5:05 PM

BRUSSELS, Aug. 23 (UPI) -- Italian Interior Minister Roberto Maroni said he planned to push the European Union to move forward on mandatory deportation for indigent foreigners.

"Yes, expulsions, just like those for illegal immigrants, not assisted or voluntary repatriations. Of course, only for those who violate rules on requirements for living in another (European Union) member state -- a minimum level of income, adequate housing and not being a burden on the social welfare system of the country hosting them," Maroni said, the EUobserver reported Monday.

The plan mirrors efforts in France to deport indigent Roma back to Romania, the EUobserver said.

Maroni called France's efforts "right."

France deported 10,000 Roma in 2009.

"Many Roma are EU citizens, but do not respect any of these (financial) requirements," Maroni said, proposing to push for mandatory deportation in a Sept. 6 meeting among EU ministers.

Previous attempts to create an EU-wide expulsion policy for indigents have failed.

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