ALAN KURDI in Palermo

No rescue ship deployed in the Mediterranean at the moment

  • Rescue ship ALAN KURDI detained in Palermo for the time being
  • Grotesque arguments of Italian authorities
  • German authorities see no reason for the detention

On Tuesday evening, our rescue ship ALAN KURDI was detained in the port of Palermo. Italian officials gave as reasons that the ship had defects that would affect safety on board. Before its last mission, however, the ship underwent a five-week shipyard time which ended in March. There, the ship had been given a complete overhaul in many areas.

Grotesque arguments of Italian authorities

“Detaining our ship is pure harassment to grind civil sea rescue efforts to a halt bit-by-bit. The ALAN KURDI has just left the shipyard and has been completely overhauled. This blockade’s only goal is to actively stop us from rescuing at sea. Instead of protecting human rights, those who do it are held up at every corner”, states spokesperson Julian Pahlke.

We have already contacted German authorities to work towards ending the blockade.

“The reasoning of Italian authorities that they are concerned about the safety of the crew and the rescued seems grotesque. If they had really been concerned about the safety of the rescued, then they should not have blockaded them for 12 days on board of the ALAN KURDI before”, states Gorden Isler, chairman of Sea-Eye e. V.

Similar to the ALAN KURDI a few weeks ago, the merchant ship MV MARINA of a shipping company from Hamburg is being blocked off Lampedusa, because it rescued 78 people. The shipping company refers to the people’s dire situation and has so far not received any support.

“The politically-motivated abuse of official authority by the Italian coast guard is preventing our planned mission in May. That is irresponsible”, states Isler further.

German authorities see no reason for the detention

Sea-Eye is in contact with German authorities, who are also trying to clarify the situation quickly. A reason to officially detain the ALAN KURDI was not confirmed by the German authorities to Sea-Eye on Wednesday.

The ALAN KURDI had rescued 150 people from distress at sea on 6 April and then had to wait 12 days for a political solution before the remaining 146 people were brought to safety. Before that, four people had to be evacuated for medical reasons. On Monday, after 16 more days of quarantine, the ship finally entered the port of Palermo, where it was detained today.