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Italy started a crackdown on illegal immigration in May.
Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi proposed new rules under which illegal immigrants would be deported more speedily, even before their appeals are heard.
The new and less welcoming national mood was expressed by the Italian President Carlo Azeglio Ciampi. Italy and Europe, he said had a "reduced capacity to welcome immigrants. We have neither the space nor the natural resources of big countries."
One problem for Italy is refugees arriving illegally by ship. In 2001, about 20,000 illegal migrants came ashore this way.
Some said they had paid between $2000 and $4000 to get to Germany via Italy.
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