EC working for Sea-Watch solution 'after migrants disembark'

German NGO files complaint to Agrigento prosecutors

27 June, 17:30

    Refugee ship Sea-Watch 3 defies Italian government taking migrants to Lampedusa island port Refugee ship Sea-Watch 3 defies Italian government taking migrants to Lampedusa island port

    BRUSSELS - European Home Affairs Commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos said Thursday that the EU was working to find a solution for the 42 migrants on the Sea-Watch 3 ship but added that this could only come about once they have disembarked. "The Commission is closely involved into coordination with the member States to find a solution to relocate the Sea Watch 3 migrants once they have disembarked," Avramopoulos told ANSA. "Some States are showing willingness to take part in the solidarity effort but the solution for the people on board is only possible once they have disembarked. "That's why I hope that Italy contributes to a fast solution for those on board in this case. "I appeal to the member States to show solidarity. We will continue to be at the side of Italy and all the member States under pressure".

    Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte on Thursday blasted the captain of the Sea-Watch 3 migrant-rescue ship after she defied an order to stay out of Italian waters on Wednesday and pulled up close to the port of Lampedusa. "The behaviour of the Sea-Watch commander is of unprecedented seriousness," said Giuseppe Conte in Osaka. "At this point the responsibility no longer belongs to the political sphere but to the Italian judiciary".

    The German NGO running the Dutch-flagged Sea-Watch3 migrant rescue ship on Thursday filed a complaint to Agrigento prosecutors. In it, the NGO asked the prosecutors to weigh "possible conduct of criminal significance" on the part of "maritime and port authorities managing rescue activities". It also asked the prosecutors to assess "the adoption of all necessary measures" to enable the 42 desperate migrants aboard to land on Lampedusa after over two weeks at sea. It urged prosecutors to "put an end to the situation of extremely serious discomfort" to which the migrants have been subjected.

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