The rescue ship “Sea-Eye 4” brings 800 people to Lampedusa

Status: 04.11.2021 7:31 p.m.

In several missions, the German rescue ship “Sea-Eye 4” saved a total of 800 people from the Mediterranean. The crew is now heading for the Italian island of Lampedusa. It is questionable whether she is allowed to dock.

After rescuing a total of 800 people, the German rescue ship “Sea-Eye 4” sets course for the port of the Italian island of Lampedusa. Initially, the ship had saved 397 people in six missions, said Sea-Eye. It was supported by a ship from the aid organization “Mission Lifeline”. Then the “Sea-Eye 4” picked up another 400 people from a completely overcrowded wooden boat.

“Unprecedented stressful situation”

The Maltese rescue services actually responsible did not respond to calls for help, said Sea-Eye. “It is shameful how Malta repeatedly evades its responsibility and ignores emergency calls,” said Sea-Eye chairman Gorden Isler. The island nation’s search and rescue area spans a wide swath of the central Mediterranean, including the waters around Italy’s southernmost island of Lampedusa and part of the corridor between Libya and Sicily.

The 24-person crew of the “Sea-Eye 4” is in an “unprecedented stressful situation”. The rescue ship is dependent on the quick allocation of a safe harbor. “The situation is absolutely unique, we haven’t had it in the last few years,” Isler told the epd news agency.

The Italian authorities initially did not assign a port to the ship despite requests from the organization, according to the information. “If they acted humanely there, we would have received a quick call back,” said Isler. The Foreign Office in Berlin said they were in contact with the “Sea Eye 4” and had an eye on the situation on the Mediterranean.

One of the most dangerous escape routes

The Libyan coast guard reportedly intercepted 280 migrants off the country’s west coast who wanted to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Europe. The people from different African countries were traveling in four wooden boats and a rubber dinghy when they were rescued, as the Libyan Navy announced on Facebook. They were handed over to the agency for the fight against illegal migration.

Especially from Libya, tens of thousands of people in need of protection in unseaworthy boats start the life-threatening crossing to Europe every year. Arrivals in Italy this year have risen sharply compared to the two previous years. So far, almost 54,000 people have arrived in Italy. Last year it was more than 29,000, in 2019 less than 10,000, according to representatives of the Italian Ministry of the Interior.

The crossing over the Mediterranean is one of the most dangerous escape routes in the world. According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), at least 1,559 people have died or are missing during the crossing this year.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *