The 33 people rescued by NGO vessel Sea-Watch 3 on Saturday remains stranded at sea, with the ship being denied a safe port.
The Sea-Watch 3 had left Malta in October after being held by authorities for four months. Authorities had stopped migrant rescue ships from entering or leaving ports early in the summer after investigations into rescue ship MV Lifeline had taken off.
#ArraedNews— Arraed LG+ (@ArraedLG) December 23, 2018
The #NGO "Sea Watch 3" ship rescued 33 #IllegalImmigrants off the coast of Libya, including four women and six children, the spokesman of the ship Ruben Neugebauer told @AFP. "They asked the European countries to receive them but none did not respond to them."#Libya pic.twitter.com/oQ1SVQnjkK
In a statement, the Sea-Watch 3 said it rescued “several children” from drowning. They are now receiving medical care on the boat.
“To escape torture, slavery and death in Libya, these people have no choice but to take on the dangerous route across the central Mediterranean Sea at Christmas,” Philipp Hahn, head of operations of Sea-Watch 3, said.
The migrants face a deadly route to reach Europe.
The situation in the Mediterranean stands to get worse
“At these temperatures, the chance of survival in the event of a shipwreck is well under 24 hours and we are incredibly glad that we found them in time,” Mr Hahn said.
The situation in the Mediterranean stands to get worse, Mr Hahn warned, as weather conditions are expected to worsen tomorrow.
“To avoid risks for the rescued, we call on the German government to find a solution before Christmas,” Mr Hahn said.
“We expect Christian parties to reflect on their values of charity and to allocate a safe haven to the rescued people so that the shipwrecked on the wintry Mediterranean no longer have to be exposed to cold weather.”
The rescue took place less than 24 hours after another rescue NGO, Open Arms, had taken in 311 people.
Two-day-old baby Sami was rescued from the boat and brought in by the Armed Forces of Malta. The baby was being monitored in the special care unit and was in stable condition, sources told the Times of Malta.
Along with the Moonbird and Colibri search aircrafts, the Spanish Open Arms and the German Sea-Eye 2, the Sea-Watch 3 is currently one of the only civil rescue ships on the Mediterranean.
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