Already 33 dead since the beginning of the year.

On Thursday morning, 26.01.2023, the SEA-EYE 4 set off on its first rescue mission in 2023. The now eleventh mission of the alliance ship was made possible by the great support and donations in recent weeks and a funding by the civilian sea rescue alliance United4Rescue. The acute need for rescue missions is already evident with a glance at the recent death toll for the current year: a total of at least 33 people have died in the Mediterranean already.

Today, more people have already died at Europe’s borders than the new year has days! Thanks to the increased willingness to donate in recent weeks, we can carry out this important rescue mission. For this, we are very grateful to all supporters,” says Gorden Isler, Chairman of Sea-Eye e. V. “The five further rescue missions planned for 2023 are not yet securely financed and are therefore hanging by a thread. We can already see that we are also urgently needed in the central Mediterranean in 2023 because the EU member states continue to do nothing about the dying at our maritime borders.

It is important that the mission of SEA-EYE 4 can take place as planned. Even now in winter, people are fleeing across the Mediterranean. We are happy that our alliance can concretely help to save lives,” says Sandra Bils, board member of United4Rescue. “At the same time, we also notice that people are donating less at the moment. But whether we can save or not should not be down to money. If missions are in danger because of collapsing donations, it shows once again: we need a governmental sea rescue!

For the second time as a ship’s doctor on board is the experienced mission doctor Dr. Angelika Leist from German Doctors: “I am involved in civil sea rescue because I can not bear to see photos of deceased refugees and because the official agencies have all disengaged. Besides, the rich European countries are partly responsible for the fact that people live in circumstances that force them to leave their home countries. I have hope that we can save as many people as possible on this mission as well.” The Bonn-based aid organization German Doctors e.V. plans to continue sending doctors on SEA-EYE 4 missions in 2023.