Press Release, 19.4.2015
Last night at least 650 people drowned about 73 nautical miles north of the Libyan coast when seeking to reach Italy. They were on board of a 30 meter long boat that capsized when the container vessel King Jacob approached them for assistance. There were only 28 survivors.
This is the biggest refugee boat catastrophe in the recent history of the Mediterranean Sea. With its decision from the 27th of August 2014 to scale down rescue operations at sea, the EU is responsible for this mass dying. The EU has the means and possibilities to rescue refugees in the Mediterranean Sea. But instead, they let people drown.
Over the last weeks, we, as the Watch The Med Alarm Phone, became direct witnesses of struggles over life and death on these boats and of the relatives’ worries. We also witnessed how the coastguards of Italy and Malta as well as the crews of commercial vessels made great efforts but could often not prevent the dying as they were not sufficiently equipped to conduct rescue operations. And this is due to political decisions made on the level of the European Union.
Fortress Europe has caused ten thousands of deaths in the Mediterranean Sea …read more