Salvini, who heads the far-right League party, the country's largest political force, hit back.
"My behaviour regarding immigration is unacceptable? The French government should stop with these insults and open its ports (to migrants)," Salvini said in a statement.
"Italians have already received too many (migrants) and spent too much. The next boats? They should head to Marseilles," he said, referring to the southern French port city.
The latest blow-up centres on moves by Salvini to make it even harder for non-government rescue vessels from docking in Italy, which led to a Dutch-flagged ship carrying some 41 Africans being kept at sea for more than two weeks.
The boat eventually disobeyed orders and docked, but the German captain now faces criminal charges.
France briefly recalled its ambassador from Rome in February to protest against what it described as "repeated, baseless" attacks by Italian political leaders on Paris.