Dozens of African migrants remain stranded in Ventimiglia on the Italian-French border after French customs officers maintained a border closure for a fourth day.
The Africans are refusing to register with the Italian authorities because they say they do not want to stay in the country, and many want to move on to join family members elsewhere.
The migrants are currently sleeping rough in makeshift camps on the rocky coastline, where they do all their washing and cooking in full view of passing tourists and local residents. On Sunday (June 14) they demonstrated at the customs post, but Italian police forced them back.
Some 57,000 migrants have made landfall in Italy so far this year, already beating the total for 2014.
EU rules say they must be taken care of by the country through which they enter the bloc. All well and good says Italy, but only if we are given help, and until now that has been lacking. On Sunday Prime Minister Matteo Renzi warned if there were not more EU solidarity, Italy had a “Plan B” that would “hurt Europe”.