News out of Malta Sunday night was that violence broke out amongst rioting migrants. The incident occurred in Hal Far, at a former British army barrack located near Malta’s airport.
Reports stated that cars belonging to at least five staff members were set on fire and that at least one policeman was injured. The rioting took place where the migrants were being detained, as they demanded to be set free.
Although the migrants were able to take control of a portion of the compound, a spokesman for the police assured that control was reestablished and the situation brought back under control early Monday morning.
With having received several hundred migrants this past summer, Malta’s migrant detention centers have been feeling the pressure of being somewhat overcrowded. The migrants were part of an agreement with Malta’s fellow EU countries, which saw the individuals brought to Malta for proper distribution. However, most of those migrants brought last summer as still on the island, which is causing a strain on the countries already limited reception centers.
According to witnesses, the migrant riots at Hal Far resulted in several rooms being torches, in addition to the several cars belonging to staff members. There were reports that one car, belonging to law enforcement, was damaged as well.
Ever since the spike in 2015 of massive Mediterranean arrivals, the EU states have been at a loss on just how to handle the giant influx of refugees. Most of those migrants are emanating from both poverty and conflicts that have been raging on in the Middle East and Africa.
Those hundreds, to now thousands of migrants that are crossing the Mediterranean in search of a better life in Europe, have resulted in Malta, as well as their neighbor Italy, with having to figure out a method of dealing with and handling the influx. In an agreement made just last month, by five EU countries, including both Malta and Italy, detailed a relocation plan that additionally included France and Germany.
With the extra added assistance from their fellow EU members, Malta would see a significant lessening of pressure on their current distribution centers. This would mean that the migrants could possibly be divided up amongst those participating countries, in an effort to better handle the continual influx of refugees.
However, the agreement will only work if each country makes a commitment and follows through on that commitment. If one country decides to pull out, at the last minute, the whole plan could very well come toppling down into ruin.
So, what’s the verdict—you decide.
Should Malta have to continue to put such a strain on their country’s resources to house and provide for the massive number of migrants it has received?