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Italy accepts the landing of 82 migrants from the "Ocean Viking" in Lampedusa

2019-09-14T09:07:30.427Z

The new Italian government is thus turning a corner with the policy of closing the ports applied by the former Minister of the Interior, Matteo Salvini.



On board the "Ocean Viking" boat, September 14th. Renata Brito / AP

The Ocean Viking , which was waiting for a safe port to land 82 migrants rescued at sea, was authorized by Italy to dock on the island of Lampedusa Saturday, September 14, according to the NGO SOS Mediterranean that charters this humanitarian ship.

🔴BREAKING # OceanViking has just been instructed by the Marine Rescue Coordination Center (MRCC) of ... https://t.co/jGFJM4FPIf

- SOSMedFrance (@SOS MEDITERRANEE France)

The government of Giuseppe Conte, resulting from a 5-star Movement and Democratic Party alliance, is turning a corner with the policy of closing the ports enforced by former Interior Minister Matteo Salvini, leader of the Extreme League right.

Germany ready to welcome a quarter of the survivors

According to the new Italian Ministry of the Interior, these migrants will be distributed in the five European countries - Italy, France, Germany, Portugal and Luxembourg - which have concluded an agreement allowing the landing of this ship, which had succeeded Aquarius and was doing his second mission in the Mediterranean.

European ministers are scheduled to meet in Malta on 23 September to discuss a long-term solution to the distribution of migrants rescued at sea. The German Interior Minister assured the Suddeutsche Zeitung that Berlin is ready to welcome a quarter of migrants saved at sea ending in Italy: "It will not overwhelm our migration policy. "

The French interior minister, Christophe Castaner, has called on the countries of the Union to " hear about a real European temporary mechanism" , beyond the ad hoc agreement for the 82 survivors of the Ocean Viking .

A European ad hoc agreement with Italy, France, Germany, Portugal and Luxembourg has been found for the ... https://t.co/mXinO7i0lU

- CCastaner (@Christophe Castaner) Read also Europe accused of "serious failures" in the rescue of migrants

Nearly two weeks at sea

A total of 84 migrants were taken aboard the boat also operated by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), but a nine-month-old pregnant woman and her companion were evacuated Wednesday by helicopter from the Maltese authorities after medical "complications". the NGO said. Among those still on board are six women, 17 minors and one year old child.

The Ocean Viking had sailed for nearly two weeks between Italy and Malta waiting for a safe port to disembark the migrants on board. He notably refused a Libyan offer to dock the ship on one of its ports.

During this expedition, which began on 2 September, 50 migrants were rescued during a first operation on 8 September in international waters off Libya. In a second time, 34 people were transhipped on the Ocean Viking after being rescued by a sailboat, the Josefa.

At the end of its first expedition at the end of August, the Ocean Viking had collected 356 migrants, who were able to disembark in Malta. France then committed to collect 150, almost half.

The story of the first mission, in August: On the "Ocean-Viking", the wait for a European solution "seems an eternity"

Source: lemonde

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