Maritime rescue: EU Mediterranean deployment Sophia suspended

Italy had previously announced that it would no longer be able to accept refugees rescued by the EU mission. The commander has now ordered all ships back to the ports.

Maritime rescue: EU Mediterranean deployment Sophia suspended

According to a report, EU-Mediterranean Operation Sophia has been discontinued for time being. The commander of Mission, Italian Admiral Enrico Credendino, ordered all ships involved to ports, Mirror reports. This includes German supply ship Mosel. Previously, Italian Government had announced that it would not accept any refugees rescued by mission from distress. Minister of Interior Matteo Salvini had announced that he would no longer be able to accept refugees rescued by international border guards and rescue missions.

According to Spiegel in military circles, order was effectively stopped. Representatives of EU Member States refore met in Brussels to find a solution. The EU Commission has also announced that it will be able to review Mission's operational plan more quickly.

As part of Sophia Mission, six military ships have been active in international waters in front of Libya since 2015. 26 EU countries participate, current mandate continues until December. The main task is to combat fight against smuggling, and soldiers are also supposed to take action against arms trafficking and illegal oil exports from Libya. In ir operations, however, many people have also been rescued from distress.

Angela Merkel estimates distress rescue

The deployment was launched after a shipwreck with 700 injured refugees off Libyan coast. Over past three years, 49,000 people have been saved. They have been brought ashore in Italy so far. To this end, 140 suspected smugglers were arrested and 200 boats used by m were destroyed.

Chancellor Angela Merkel informed her that y appreciated work of rescuers, provided y adhered to legal system. So territorial waters of Libya would have to be respected. The rescue is an international task "from which one cannot pull out anyway". But one could try to prevent people from putting ir lives at risk. Italy warns that it is not only country that is responsible for rescued. "Now we have to deal with this politically." With regard to external border guards, solidarity of Member States will always be an issue.

Distress Rescue FAQ on situation in Mediterranean

Europe has longbeen foreclosed: is Europe overrun by refugees from North Africa? No. Since autumn 2015, Europe has increasingly turned into a fortress, shows our graphics.

fewer deaths at sea mean more deaths in desert: what it means to make African countries bouncers of migration: Who is caught must go back. This is why people choose even more dangerous routes.

Why doesn't it stop dying? The Mediterranean remains a mass grave for migrants. Which routes for refugees are re, who provides help and why are re problems again and again?

fewer helpers mean more deaths: Private rescue ships in Mediterranean help smuggling gangs, claim EU politicians. However, an evaluation of position data shows that helpers adhere to rules.

at Europe's New frontier: To prevent refugees, Europe is shifting its borders and not afraid of dark business. The defensive zones extend to West Africa.

"Migrants are a business model for many Libyans": tortured and enslaved – migrants experience inhumanity in Libya. There are no rules to halt smugglers, says migration expert Leonard Doyle.

Date Of Update: 21 July 2018, 12:02

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