Austria sends troops to Italian border

Austria sends troops to Italian border
By Robert Hackwill
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Austria, where an election campaign is getting under way, sends troops to crack down on human trafficking on its Italian border.


Austria is sending soldiers to its border with Italy, stiffening controls on the Brenner pass. They will reinforce local police officers who currently oversee the frontier.

Officials say the deployment is to crack down on human trafficking. The interior minister has deployed 900 soldiers, and checks will increase on goods lorries, foreign coaches, and border backroads.

Italy says it has noted a falloff in applications for asylum status compared to July 2016, and adds it has taken in 1200 migrants coming from Austria already this year. Austria claims it is finding between 700 to 1000 a month in the Tyrol entering the country.

In Germany border police there are reporting a spike in the last month of migrants trying to get in from Italy. At Rosenheim police say that while in the first half of this year they caught 20 people, in July 100 were picked up and that surge is continuing.

Italy’s interior minister spoke on Tuesday of seeing “light at the end of the tunnel” in relation to the migrant flood, which has seen Italy take in at least 600,000 people in the last four years.

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