Do not criminalize NGOs saving migrants, says Germany

Minister comments on Malta ruling against Lifeline captain

15 May, 19:19

    (ANSAmed) - BERLIN, MAY 15 - The Germany government is against the generalized criminalization of rescuing migrants at sea by private entities, the spokesman for the interior minister said Wednesday. He was responding to a question on the recent ruling against and heavy fine imposed on Claus-Peter Reisch, the German captain of the Lifeline ship, which had rescued migrants in distress at sea on behalf of a German NGO. The spokesman for Horst Seehofer, Soeren Schmidt, said that Berlin had asked that the EU and NATO put forth efforts to find a European-wide solution as soon as possible to the migrants issue, based on solidarity and humanity, and that it function in a systematic, long-lasting manner. Noting that Germany had several times offered to take in migrants onboard ships that had problems getting permission to land, he announced that 40 Germany cities had said they were willing to take in migrants. German government spokesman Ulrike Demmer did not comment on the sentence by the Valletta court but reiterated that "every death in the Mediterranean is one death too many". (ANSAmed).

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