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Libya, Italy keen to fight illegal immigration across Mediterranean

2017-07-14 03:41:38 (Beijing Time)         news.xinhuanet.com

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Italian Interior Minister Marco Minniti holds a press conference during a forum for cooperation between Italy and Libya in the fight against illegal immigration in Tripoli, capital of Libya, on July 13, 2017. (Xinhua/Hamza Turkia)

TRIPOLI, July 13 (Xinhua) -- Libya's UN-backed Prime Minister Fayez Serraj met on Thursday with Italian Interior Minister Marco Minniti in the capital Tripoli

According to the prime minister's media office, the meeting discussed issues of illegal immigration and human trafficking, as well as programs to train Libyan coast guard and secure Libya's southern borders.

Serraj hailed Italy's efforts in fighting illegal immigration and expressed hope that other European countries will "share the burden."

"Libya will do whatever it can to work with Italy to defeat human traffickers and relieve pressure on Italy's coast," Serraj told Minniti.

Minniti said Italy calls for more attention on migration across the Mediterranean and necessary support for Libyan coast guard.

"Italy appreciates GNA's efforts to step up its commitment in fight against human traffickers," Minniti said.

Because of the insecurity and chaos in Libya, many immigrants choose to cross the Mediterranean in rickety boats to Italian shores and many of them drown on the way.