Among the actions taken by the Italian government to manage the arrival of migrants during the COVID-19 pandemic were the so-called ‘quarantine ships’ (former passenger ferries). The first experiment took place on the Rubattino where, between 17 April and 5 May 2020, 183 people were hosted.
How should one define the flows of migrants during periods of crisis? This is a question that is frequently answered in a myriad of ways. At the moment, there is a fairly high level of agreement, on the causes affecting the flows of forced migrants as a whole (e.g. wars, disasters, territorial conflicts, persecution, epidemics, climate change, etc.).
Up until the latter part of the 20th century, the southern regions of Italy were sites of emigration. Since the 1990s however, some of these areas – originally points of departure – have progressively transformed into areas for the arrival and reception of different types of migration.