Index number: EUR 30/5004/2016. Thousands of men, women and children, fleeing conflict, persecution and poverty, keep crossing the central Mediterranean in search of protection or a better life in Europe. Italy, leading efforts to save lives at sea, receives rescued people in its ports almost daily. In 2015 the European Union presented, as a flagship response to new arrivals on the continent, the “hotspot approach”. Amnesty International’s research, demonstrates that a host of human rights abuses are taking place in Italy, including excessive use of force by police, arbitrary detention and collective expulsions, and details serious allegations of torture and other forms of ill-treatment.