The Italian government on Monday won a confidence vote in the Senate on a decree targeting charities operating migrant rescue ships, in a victory for Interior Minister Matteo Salvini and his far-right League party.
The government of the League and the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement has been riven by internal strife in recent weeks but won the vote by 160 to 57. It would have had to resign had it lost the motion.
The decree drawn up by Salvini, who also serves as deputy prime minister, toughens sanctions on charity ships that seek to bring migrants rescued in the Mediterranean to Italy.
The decree hikes maximum fines for ships that enter Italian waters without authorization to 1 million euros ($1.12 million) from a previous 50,000. It also provides for the arrest of captains who ignore orders to stay away and calls on naval authorities to seize their boats automatically.