Italy Senate opens means for trial of ex minister Salvini over migrant ship

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The Italian Senate voted Thursday to elevate the immunity of former inside minister Matteo Salvini of the far-right League, paving the best way for him to be tried for refusing to permit 164 migrants to get off a ship in Sicily final August.

Salvini’s choice stored the migrants aboard the Spanish rescue ship Open Arms for 20 days, after which it was lastly allowed to enter a port on the Italian island of Lampedusa.

Public prosecutors have accused him of kidnapping and negligence, however he was shielded from going through trial as he has immunity.

“I will go to court with my head held high and my back straight. This is a political trial and if anyone thinks they have weakened me, they are mistaken”, Salvini mentioned forward of the vote.

In February, the Senate lifted Salvini’s immunity in the same case involving one other blocked ship. A preliminary listening to on that case is scheduled for October 3.