A safe harbour is urgently needed for the 49 migrants stranded for days in the Mediterranean

Floriana, (02/01/2019) – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) expresses its concerns regarding the conditions of the 49 migrants rescued several days ago in the Mediterranean, for whom a safe port has not yet been guaranteed.

Specifically, 32 people are still on board the ship ‘Sea Watch 3’, after being rescued more than 10 days ago (22 December), while 17 people, who were rescued on 29 December, are still on board the ship of the NGO ‘Sea-Eye’.

Both ships are not adequately equipped to accommodate people on board for such long periods, especially during winter, with harsh weather conditions, gradually dropping temperatures and increasingly rougher seas.

It is unacceptable to leave men, women and children for such long time at sea and without a proper assistance, taking into consideration that many would have risked their life on unseaworthy vessels and experienced difficult journeys that – from the countries of origin onward – are often characterized by dangers and violence.

It is urgent and necessary that European States show a sense of responsibility and solidarity for the migrants and refugees, granting the 49 persons in question a safe harbour as soon as possible.