Seafarer Loffreda: “Government can divert NGO ships to any Italian port”

“Geo Barents and Ocean Viking disconnected from Sar zone become Pos, Place of Safety”

The Government’s decision to authorize the docking of the boats in Ancona was clear and logical NGO ships Geo Barents (supply vessel of Doctors Without Borders, carrying 73 migrants) ed Ocean Viking, (which rescued 37 people off the coast of Libya). He has no doubts seafarer Giuseppe Loffreda who thus replies to Adnkronos regarding the objections raised against the Viminale line: “The Government can divert NGO ships to any Italian port. Also on the basis of IMO resolution 167/2004, also indirectly referred to in the new flows decree, the NGO ship that does not head towards the port closest to the rescue operations of migrants, which took place in the Libyan SAR (Search and rescue) area, therefore heads for Tunisia or Malta, is now disconnected from the SAR area and accepts to be itself a ‘Place of safety’ (Pos), as the ship is properly armed and equipped. If you intend to proceed towards our country, it is therefore legitimate for Italy to assign you any safe port which could even be Genoa”.

And in the event of stormy seas, could the assigned destination change? “Yes – replies the navigation law expert – It depends on the characteristics of the ship. But for a supply vessel the sea must be really stormy. A very rough sea is not enough”. In the case of Geo Barents and Ocean Viking, bound for Ancona? “They are supply ships. Capable of navigating in rough seas. In the current weather conditions and in the light of future forecasts, they can reach their destination without problems”.