C o m m u n i q u é
The President of the Republic, Sergio Mattarella, sent to Stephane Jaquemet, Regional Representative for Southern Europe at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the following message:
«I would like to address a grateful greeting to all those celebrating World Refugee Day, drawing public attention to an unrelenting human drama.
This meaningful celebration comes at a particularly tormented moment, characterized very sizable flows of migrants and, with them, of refugees.
In parallel, in a scenario of evident political and social conflict, there are patent and growing instinctive fears and generic appeals to reasons of defence, to closing borders and putting up walls and barriers.
The theme that you have chosen for this edition, "With refugees and on the side of those who are obliged to flee", calls on all citizens and on the international community to make an effort to understand and sympathise with the primary needs of those fleeing, of those seeking help and refuge, in order to escape from indescribable catastrophes.
The dramatic flow of children, women and men forced to undertake journeys driven by despair, requires an informed, staunch and determined effort: a humanitarian effort to save the lives of those fleeing; an economic effort to provide adequate resources to tackle the emergency; a political effort to mitigate the reasons of conflict and underdevelopment and to manage an epochal phenomenon with intelligence and foresight.
Italy has well understood these priorities and has long been engaged on the front line, determined to continue making a convinced and constructive contribution on a number of fronts, and forcefully calling on the international community, starting from the European Union, to make a truly concerted effort.
Only thus, through an authentic "multilateralism of understanding", will we be victorious in a challenge that calls into play civil progress, our being Europeans, our enforcement of the principles laid down in the United Nations Charter.
In this spirit, which I know drives your daily efforts, allow me to renew to all of you my sincerest thanks and warmest wishes.»
Rome, 20 June 2016