Italy is at breaking point, with 181,000 migrants travelling to the country, mostly by boat, in the last year.
And the government in Rome estimated the nation could only take a total of 200,000.
The country’s answer to the crisis is the Minniti-Orlando decree, which will see several detention centres built at a cost of £13 million to the taxpayer, which will act as depot for migrants returning to their homeland.
But 50 refugees took to the streets in Piazza Nettuno in Bologna to demonstrate against “the walls of policy and expulsions”.
The migrants were keen to shatter the notion that they simply scrounge off the state and came to Italy for an easy ride.
One refugee said: “We are accused of living in hotels paid with the money of Italian people, but in fact we waited in silence in reception centres.”
The new decree, which could fast-track deportation for potentially thousands of migrants, has left the African cohort feeling despondent.