The Malta Independent 28 September 2020, Monday

353 migrants to be disembarked in Palermo

Tuesday, 1 September 2020, 14:09 Last update: about 26 days ago

Sea-Watch International, the German-flagged charity boat has been allowed to disembark 353 rescued migrants in Palermo in Sicily.

The “relief for the survivors” was announced by the NGO on Tuesday, who said that they would be disembarked onto a ship to quarantine before being disembarked in Palermo.

The NGO said that the disembarkation was being allowed a whole 11 days after the first SeaWatch rescue of migrants.

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Among the 353 migrants on the Sea-Watch 4 are migrants who were transferred from the Louise Michel, a former French coast guard motorboat, which has now been put into service by activists for rescues in the Mediterranean after being painted and sponsored by the street artist Bansky.

49 people had already been evacuated from the Louise Michel by the Italian coastguard, while the body of a migrant who died before the boat could rescue him was also removed by the coastguard.

On Monday, the European Commission’s spokesperson on migration urged frontline states to allow the disembarkation of migrants who were rescued at sea in recent weeks.

There are still 27 migrants onboard the tanker Etienne Maersk, having been there for over three weeks now.  The tanker is moored just off Hurd’s Bank as it waits for a solution to disembark the migrants.

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