On the occasion of its visit to Italy carried out in June 2017, the Committee examined the situation of foreign nationals arrived from North Africa and deprived of their freedom in the so-called ‘hotspots’ and closed removal centres. With regard to the hotspots, the CPT expressed its concerns about the legal basis for the deprivation of liberty and stressed that the fundamental legal safeguards should be applied effectively by law and in practice in order to reduce the risk of refoulement. The Committee also noted that many unaccompanied minors were returned to hotspots, as the facilities dedicated to them were full. As regards repatriation centers, these were deemed lacking of material conditions and too focused on security, to the point of being comparable to detention facilities. Several cases of violence and intimidation have been reported, which according to the Committee are due to the lack of recreational activities and the absence of contacts between the migrants and the staff.
Response of the Italian Government to the report of the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) on its visit to Italy from 7 to 13 June 2017, CPT/Inf (2018) 14, 10 April 2018