The search and rescue organisations SOS Humanity, Mission Lifeline and Sea-Eye are taking legal action at the Civil Court in Rome against the Italian authorities’ systematic policy of assigning distant ports.
The Italian authorities assigned Ravenna in northern Italy to the Humanity 1 as a place of migrants disembarkation.
The crew of the non-governmental rescue ship rescued 69 survivors in the central Mediterranean early on Thursday morning.
Navigation to the distant port of Ravenna would place undue psychological and physical strain on the survivors, the Humanity 1’s captain emphasised.
Furthermore, the Italian authorities’ practice contradicts international maritime law and will be challenged in court by the non-governmental search and rescue organisations.
On 20 April, around 2 a.m., the crew of Humanity 1 rescued 69 people including more than 15 unaccompanied minors from distress at sea in international waters off the Libyan coast.
The port of disembarkation assigned to Humanity 1 at 3:30 a.m., Ravenna, is over 1,600 km away from the vessel’s position at the time of the rescue.
The long navigation to Ravenna, despite other ports being much closer, risks the deterioration of the condition of the already vulnerable survivors.
International Press Agency