Evacuation by the Italian coast guard

Italian coast guard evacuates one person during the night of Good Friday

  • ALAN KURDI does not receive any food, medicine or fuel from Italy
  • Italian coast guard evacuates a person from board off the coast of Lampedusa
  • Italy, Malta and Libya describe their own ports as unsafe
  • German maritime rescue coordination centre overwhelmed with coordination
  • ALAN KURDI is looking for shelter in the northwest of Sicily due to weather

It took the Italian rescue directing centre MRCC ROME about one day to refuse ALAN KURDI-Captain Bärbel Beuse’s request for food, medicine and fuel. The required vessels for this transport would not be available on the islands of Lampedusa and Linosa. Italy referred to Malta. The Maltese rescue coordination centre reacted promptly: “Do not try to push this onto Malta.” Thus, the rescue directing centre in Valletta made clear that Malta is also not willing to help.

The situation on board of the ALAN KURDI is getting more tense, as the rescue ship is not suitable for the indefinite accommodation of 150 people. During the night, Captain Bärbel Beuse insisted and repeated her requests for the most urgent needs:

We have to stress that the ship requires food in the next 48 hours.

In the meantime, Libya, just as Italy and Malta, declared its own ports as unsafe for the disembarkation and care for people rescued from distress at sea. Currently, Libya is forbidding a ship of the so-called Libyan Coast Guard with 280 people to run into a Libyan port. The Libyan Coast Guard declared in the meantime that it could not conduct any further rescues since no face masks were available. Vincent Cochetel, special envoy of the United Nations, states to Spiegel Online that the people smugglers could exploit this situation and lie to fleeing people if necessary. In fact, over the last few days, fleeing people reached the Italian island Lampedusa in several boats under great danger. How many boats disappeared on the Mediterranean and how many people drowned is unknown.

It is not acceptable that we see multi-million rescue packages for the European industry, but at the same time, it’s claimed that there are no resources for the protection of migrants”, states Gorden Isler, chairman of Sea-Eye e.V. “Europe has thus allowed a situation to happen where humanitarian catastrophes compete and are played off against each other”, Isler states further.

The German maritime rescue coordination centre in Bremen stated in the night of Good Friday that it is overwhelmed with the coordination of the German ship’s situation.

The MRCC Bremen wrote to their colleagues in Rome: “I am fully aware of the brisance of the actual situation but MRCC Bremen is not able to respond as you expect or hope for.”

Friday noon, the ALAN KURDI set course towards a position northwest of Sicily to seek shelter from approaching heavy weather. Sea-Eye informed German authorities of this decision in the morning already.