The Italian government is under increased criticism for having approved a new security package that cracks down on illegal immigration. Despite the censure of human rights groups and the Vatican, the law was passed in the Senate on July 2, with 157 in favour and 124 against. The lower house passed it in May.
The most controversial aspects of the measure have to do with illegal immigration, making it punishable by fines up to 10,000 euro. The security bill targets illegal immigration in other ways. Those who knowingly house or rent apartments to illegal immigrants face up to three years in prison. Those who help illegal immigrants gain entry into the country can face up to 15 years in prison.