Europe cannot criticise Donald Trump over building walls, Italy's finance minister fumed
Italy’s Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano said Europe is not in a position to criticise the president.
Donald Trump issued an executive order on Friday barring Syrian refugees from the United States and suspending travel from seven Muslim-majority countries, sparking protests at home and abroad.
The president has also reiterated his calls for a border to be built along the US-Mexico border.
Today Europe is not in a position to express opinions about the actions of others. Or do we want to forget that walls have also been erected in Europe?
Italy’s Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano
Mr Alfano told the Corriere della Sera newspaper: "Today Europe is not in a position to express opinions about the actions of others. Or do we want to forget that walls have also been erected in Europe?"
During the migrant crisis EU member state Austria built a fence and control station on the border with fellow member state Slovenia as migrants attempted to make their way across Europe.
Donald Trump's travel ban has sparked protests
Neighbouring Hungary also built a 109-mile barrier along its border with Croatia and a fence along its Serbia border as migrants used Hungary as a gateway to Europe.
Bulgaria also built a barbed wire fence along its border with Turkey in response to the migrant crisis.
More than one million migrants, arriving mainly from the Middle East, have made their way into Europe in the last two years.
Get Quotes on Home Insurance
Hungarian soldiers fix the poles of a new fence at the Croatian-Hungarian border in 2015
More than one million migrants have made their way into Europe in the last two years
Mr Trump has put a four-month hold on allowing refugees into the US and temporarily banned travellers from seven Muslim-majority nations.
The ban covers citizens of Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. He says the ban will help keep Americans safe and he has cited recent attacks by Islamist militants in several European countries.
Mr Alfano stressed there was no proven link between migrants and terrorism.
Angelino Alfano said Europe is in no position to criticise Donald Trump
The foreign minister said Italy’s vision on dealing with migrants “is different” as he praised his country for rescuing migrants crossing the Mediterranean.
He said: “We were world champions in saving lives in the Mediterranean and welcome to those who flee war and persecution. Security and solidarity can go together.”
The EU's foreign policy chief, Italy's Federica Mogherini, said Europe will continue to work closely with countries across the Muslim world and to help refugees from the region.
Mexico Wall: Trump gives the go ahead
Thu, January 26, 2017
The structures, fences and walls that mark the border between the United States and Mexico as President Donald Trump reiterates his promise to build a wall along the U.S. border with Mexico.
1 of 11
Combo with images of the border fence between Mexico and the U.S. taken in the states of Sonora and Baja California, Mexico, and in the states of Arizona and California, U.S., between July 2, 2016 and January 25, 2017.
She said: "In Europe, we have a history that has taught us that … you might end up being in a prison if you build all the walls around you.
"The EU will continue to work… with all the countries of the region regardless of their religion."