Hundreds of migrants rescued in central Mediterranean | free press


Several hundred migrants from the Mediterranean were again rescued. There are currently three lifeboats operated by private organizations on the water.

Rome (AP) – Crews from several private sea rescue organizations rescued hundreds of migrant boaters in the central Mediterranean on Sunday.

In the early morning hours, SOS Mediterranee’s “Ocean Viking” and “Sea-Watch 3” took about 400 people on board in a five-hour rescue operation, the Berlin-based organization Sea-Watch announced. The crews of the two ships had already rescued people from distress the days before.

According to SOS Mediterranee, the area of ​​operations was in Tunisian waters on Sunday morning. The people were on a multi-storey wooden boat. The sailboat “Nadir” of the German organization ResQship was also involved in the rescue.

According to the organization, nearly 450 people were on board the “Ocean Viking”, which had taken dozens of boat migrants to safety on Saturday in several missions. The “Sea-Watch 3” also had dozens of rescued people on its ship. Six were disembarked by the Italian coastguard at the request of the crew on Friday due to their ill health.

From the coasts of Libya and Tunisia, migrants repeatedly board boats to reach the EU via the central Mediterranean. The crossing is dangerous, the overcrowded barges are often in distress. According to the UN, 930 migrants have died in the central Mediterranean this year. The private organizations criticize the fact that people are repeatedly intercepted by the coast guards of the countries and, for example, returned to Libya, where they are threatened with violence. In Italy, on the other hand, the use of private sea rescuers is politically controversial.