There is a “form of submersion [of migrants] in the literal sense” of the term. On France Inter, this Tuesday, September 19, Bruno Retailleau, Les Républicains senator, condemned the arrival in Lampedusa of 8,500 migrants between last Monday and Wednesday, i.e. 2,500 more than the number of inhabitants of this small Italian island.

Before him, Marine Le Pen, president of the RN group in the National Assembly, and Éric Ciotti, president of the Republicans, used this same term to describe the situation. “It’s a term that we must be able to use given the proportions,” he confirmed, refusing to draw a parallel with the arrival of Ukrainians.

“Lampedusa is the island where the future of Europe is at stake” according to @BrunoRetaileau. “If we don’t provide a response, there will be an electoral insurrection,” said the president of the LR group in the Senate. “The policy of firmness will pay off.”

There is, according to the senator, “this feeling of people who are dispossessed. They are dispossessed of this right of their own to be able to control the borders,” explaining that a policy of “give and take with the emitting countries” will be required.

This situation has put the island’s reception capacities under great strain, generated a political shock wave in Italy and relaunched the thorny question of European solidarity in matters of reception and distribution of asylum seekers, for support countries on the front line of these arrivals.