The Malta Independent 11 December 2019, Wednesday

Updated: Open Arms - Migrant with tumour, one with pneumonia, 6 relatives brought to Malta

Associated Press Monday, 12 August 2019, 08:01 Last update: about 5 months ago

The Armed Forces of Malta are currently coordinating a medical evacuation of 8 migrants from onboard the migrant rescue ship Open Arms, the AFM said in a statement.

The migrants have been transferred onboard the AFM’s P21 vessel, and are being brought to Hay Wharf Base, Malta.

The Spanish aid group says nine people were evacuated from its migrant rescue ship while it continues to seek a port where another 151 passengers can get off. The ninth migrant was taken to Italy on Sunday.

Open Arms said two women - one with a brain tumour and the other with pneumonia - and six of their relatives were transferred to Malta on Monday. 

The aid group says its eponymous boat still hasn't received permission to disembark in a European port 12 days after it rescued 123 migrants in the Mediterranean Sea. The crew picked up 39 more migrants on Saturday.

Italy's Lampedusa island has the nearest port. The country banned both the Open Arms and a Norwegian-flagged rescue ship which is carrying 251 migrants.




A Spanish aid group says it has asked Italy to help evacuate three migrants for health reasons out of the 160 passengers on board its rescue ship while the captain seeks authorization to enter a port.

Humanitarian group Open Arms said Sunday that the three "require specialized medical attention."

It said, "We are waiting for confirmation from Italian authorities" since Italy had "the nearest safe port."

The organization's eponymous rescue ship, the Open Arms, rescued 123 migrants in the central Mediterranean Sea on Aug. 2. The Italian coast guard removed two pregnant women a day later, but the other passengers have remained at sea.

The ship's crew picked up another 39 migrants on Saturday. The government of Malta said it would take them because the rescue happened in its search-and-rescue area.

The aid group's founder declined the offer, saying a safe port needed to be found for all the rescued passengers.

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