The Malta Independent 14 November 2018, Wednesday

Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) rescues over 700 migrants in first ten days of 2015 operation

Thursday, 14 May 2015, 17:32 Last update: about 5 years ago

In the first ten days since the launch of its 2015 mission, The Migrant Offshore Aid Station rescued over 700 migrants from the Mediterranean and assisted other operations. A timeline of operations carried out follows.

2 May:

The Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS), in partnership with Medecins Sans Frontiers/Doctors Without Borders (MSF), launched its 2015 mission on 2 May. The rescue ship Phoenix, its 20-person crew including search and rescue personnel, drone operators and the MSF post-rescue medical assistance team, left Malta and moved to the operations area in the Mediterranean Sea.

3 May: 473 saved

Less than 24 hours after launching, the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) in Rome directed the team towards a stranded boat. The team deployed drones to locate the vessel, and once located, changed course to provide assistance to the boat in distress.


Under MRCC Rome guidance, the crew transferred 369 people, including pregnant women and more than 40 children ontoPhoenix.

The transfer took over 4 hours to complete. MRCC Rome communicated that the rescued were to be disembarked in Pozzallo, Sicily.

On the way to Sicily, MRCC Rome directed our team to assist another boat, without power and adrift, carrying 104 people.Once the transfer was completed, Phoenix continued on her way to Pozzallo.

7 May - 118 rescued
At 8:55 am, MRCC Rome communicated that a boat with over one hundred people on board was requesting assistance. MOAS launched two drones to locate the vessel in distress. This time, 118 people, including 25 children, were rescued.  


9 May - 101 disembarked
Whilst on the way to Sicily to disembark the rescued, MRCC Rome asked for our support in transferring 101 people from an Italian Coast Guard patrol vessel.  In the spirit of cooperation, the coast guard offered the use of their rigid-hulled inflatable boats. Before safely arriving in Sicily, the MSF team attended every passenger aboard.


13 May - 188 Rescued
 
In back-to-back rescue missions, Phoenix rescued two boats totaling 188 people from 15 mostly sub-Saharan countries. The final transfer to HMS Bulwark took place at 19:54.

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