572 migrants on board, authorization from the Italian authorities to assess cases of vulnerability
The NGO Geo Barents search and rescue ship of Doctors Without Borders, with 572 migrants on board, is docked at the port of Catania. The ship has received the authorization of the Italian authorities to assess the cases of vulnerability on board.
“After risking their lives at sea to escape Libya, 572 people remained hostage to inhumane political choices for more than 10 days aboard a ship, instead of being granted the right to disembark in a safe harbor. After all, these people must now also witness the cynical spectacle of politics playing with their lives. All those aboard the Geo Barents must be able to disembark immediately, to receive assistance and have their right to seek protection recognized, “says Juan Matias Gil, head mission of Doctors Without Borders.
Msf reiterates in a note “that a rescue operation can only be considered finished once all the survivors have been disembarked in a safe place. Selective and partial disembarkation, such as the one proposed by the Italian authorities, is not to be considered legal. according to maritime law conventions “.
“According to international law – continues the note – a ship is not responsible for welcoming survivors on board where alternative solutions are possible. Furthermore, the responsible government should take all necessary measures to ensure that survivors remain on board as soon as possible. possible, as established by the Guidelines on the Treatment of Persons Rescued at Sea “.