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Italy bargains the fate of 132 refugees stuck offshore with the EU




The Italian coastguard boat has become a floating detention center for 132 refugees rescued, and Italian interior minister refused to allow them to disembark. Only 16 minors have been allowed to leave the boat.

Matteo Salvini is urging the other European countries to agree to take them in as the migrants were rescued by Italian and Tunisian fishermen before being taken by the Gregoretti coast guard boat.

The Gregoretti docked in Catania to allow a pregnant woman and her family to disembark and after it went to Augusta where it’s stuck amid the tensions between Italy and the EU over a resolution.

According to the UNHCR data, 35,000 people arrived in Spain, Italy, Greece, Cyprus and Malta and 820 have died trying to cross the Mediterranean and for this, the UN called the EU to act fast.

“The crucial role played by NGOs must be acknowledged. They should not be criminalised nor stigmatised for saving lives at sea. Commercial vessels, who are increasingly being relied upon to conduct rescue operations, must not be requested to transfer rescued people to the Libyan Coast Guard, nor directed to disembark them in Libya, which is not a port of safety.” said UN’s Antonio Vitorino.
Salvini’s moves are escalating a crisis of migration in the EU as he arrested NGO Sea Watch captain Carola Rackete for helping the rescued migrants to disembark in Lampedusa. Although she still may face charges for assisting illegal immigration, a judge ruled that she was carrying out her duty and she was released.


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