Italy estimates it has saved the lives of 12,000 migrants invaders but needs more EU help

A member of the Italian navy looks on during an operation to rescue rafts crowded with migrants invaders in the Mediterranean Sea south of Sicily in February, 2014. More than 1,100 were rescued in this operation.

(ANSAmed) ROME, April 8: Italy’s sweeping surveillance-and-rescue operation Mare Nostrum in the Mediterranean “has so far saved 12,000 migrants invaders but our efforts alone are not sufficient,” Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini said on Tuesday.

“Progress has been made in making Europe aware of the need to take charge of the problem but it is not enough,” Mogherini said, addressing the Schengen Committee.

The foreign minister said “a lot still needs to be done and we count on taking care of it during the [coming] Italian term of presidency” of the EU Council.

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The presidency of the EU Council rotates among the member states of the EU every six months. From Wiki:

The presidency is not an individual, but rather the position is held by a national government. It is sometimes incorrectly referred to as the President of the European Union. The presidency’s function is to chair meetings of the Council, determine its agendas, set a work programme and facilitate dialogue both at Council meetings and with other EU institutions. The current presidency (as of January 2014) is held by Greece.

Italy is scheduled to take over in July 2014.