A day after a key summit of the European Union in Slovakia, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi says his country will not believe that everything is alright in the face of a malfunctioning Europe.
“I don't think it would be right for Italy to pretend not to notice when things are not getting any better,” said Renzi at a conference in the Italian city of Florence on Saturday, several hours after voicing his dissatisfaction over meager achievements made at Friday’s summit in Bratislava, Slovakia.
The summit was attended by EU leaders from 27 member states in a bid to work on a roadmap for the bloc’s post-Brexit future, and to discuss issues currently facing the EU, including refugees, security and the faltering economy.
“We said more or less the same things” as in previous summits, said the Italian premier, who had hoped for more concrete measures on both refugee crisis and economic growth.
He had also refused to take part in a joint conference with German and French leaders apparently to express his dissatisfaction with the outcome of the summit.
“I cannot take part in a press conference with German Chancellor [Angela Merkel] or French President [Francois Hollande] when I don't share their conclusions,” he said on Friday.
Italy has been on the frontline of the refugee influx and the Italian leader have plans to curb the influx, which is mainly stemming from the North African nations, particularly Libya, through closing the main sea routes.
However, Renzi complained that the issue was not even addressed at the Bratislava summit, where the documents presented “didn't even mention Africa.”
Many blame the West for the violence that has displaced millions of people in North Africa and the Middle East, mainly Syria, leading to the huge refugee influx into Europe.
The European Union is apparently having a hard time trying to steady the ship after Britain’s unexpected referendum on June 23 to quit the bloc.