The over migrants aboard NGO ships is a tug-of-war that the Meloni government doesn’t want to lose. Germany replied to Italy that it did not intend to i migrants on Humanity 1, a flying civilian ship German flag, as required by our country. On the other hand, the government responded through the Farnesina by asking for clear and accurate information about who is on board. Meanwhile, off the Sicilian coast, the German ship and the other two Norwegians laden with migrants are waiting for Italy to open a port and try to give our country a big voice.
Europe on migrants turns the other way: ‘Not responsible for coordination’
From Brussels, the European Commission he did not want to get actively involved in the matter because “he is not responsible for coordinating” the rescue operations at sea. Without making specific country references, he explained that “it is necessary to stress that it is a moral and legal obligation” for member states to rescue people at sea. Germany and Norway, considering that three ships flying their flag took on board the migrants, have complied with this obligation and would comply and fully respect this obligation by opening the port for disembarkation.
From Germany, where he will attend the G7 Foreign Affairs in Munster, Antonio Tajani He reiterated the indications already given by the government: “We only asked for compliance with the rules, we did it in an official way, with great grace but also with great determination”. Then the foreign minister added: “We have to work a lot with a friendly country and a great interlocutor like Germany, and then when we have to get a message across, especially on the issue of immigration, we do it with determination, but with a guarantee.” respect for the rules. We have asked that NGO ships respect European rules when rescuing someone at sea and then ask to dock at the nearest ports.
Ocean Viking raises his voice: “You must disembark without further delay”
Italy set the tone this time. The government has changed and is more determined than ever not to be bullied by the NGOs that have dealt with Italian ports well and badly. Matteo Salvini Through his social networks, he gives precise instructions, the same as Giorgia Meloni: “Where should a Norwegian ship go? Quite simply, in Norway …”. However, NGO ships almost seem to want to issue orders: “You must disembark immediately”. Nicola Stalla, Sos Mediterranee’s search and rescue coordinator, says decisively aboard the Ocean Viking, one of the Norwegian-flagged ships.
After 10 days at sea off the Sicilian coast, the Ocean Viking requested a port to France, Spain and Greece, but at the moment there are no replies from the three countries polled after Italy and Malta were banned from entering their territorial waters. “Sos Mediterranee is asking the Greek, Spanish and French maritime authorities and other authorities in a position to provide assistance and allow immediate disembarkation in a safe port. This blockade at sea is not only morally shameful but also an important disregard legal provisions international law of the sea and humanitarian law,” they say from the ship.
Of course, the principle does not apply to NGOs
They call on the NGO Sos Mediterranee to follow the advice that they want to open a “safe haven with a minimal deviation from that expected route of the ship”. What is the planned route of the NGO ship? Where did the Ocean Viking go after the rescue? What is the port of arrival? Departure / arrival to be able to predict a route. The principle of “minimum deviation from the planned route” is useful for merchant ships conducting salvage en route.These ships have the right to enter the nearest port of safety from a certain point on the known route.
Operating in the central Mediterranean, Tunisia’s shores are as close, if not closer, to NGO vessels than Italy’s, and Tunisia also has safe spots, as recently noted by Vincent Cochetel, UNHCR Special Envoy, on the Open website: “People can be disembarked: they will not be sent to prison, they will not be sent back by the authorities of their country from which they may flee. We can work with IOM and they provide support. It’s not great, it’s not a ‘luxury’ welcome, but it’s fine.” And it’s not up to NGOs to decide whether a country has safe place status or not.