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News > Italy

Italy: Two Pregnant Women Evacuated From 'Open Arms' Vessel

  • African migrants rescued by Open Arms in the Mediterranean, August 1, 2019.

    African migrants rescued by Open Arms in the Mediterranean, August 1, 2019. | Photo: EFE

Published 3 August 2019

The African shipwrecked were landed by the Italian Coast Guard due to their advanced gestation states.

Two African women in advanced gestation, who were rescued in the Mediterranean sea, were evacuated on Saturday from the Open Arms, a ship owned by Proactiva, a Spanish humanitarian organization.


New Ship to Resume Migrants Rescue Efforts in Mediterranean Sea

"Complete medical evacuation. Two pregnant women... [were] evacuated two hours ago by the Italian Coastguard," the Open Arms founder, Oscar Camps, tweeted.

On Friday night, an Italian Coast Guard boat approached the Open Arms vessel and found two African migrants. The first one, a 32-years woman, nine months pregnant, proved to be suffering from a large abdominal hernia, volunteer medics said after performing an ultrasound.

The baby was also in "traverse lie", or sideways, which would pose a danger, the head of the humanitarian mission, Anabel Montes. She added there are an additional 121 migrants still living on the Spanish ship.

"Every minute that passes the situation gets worse and they urgently need to be landed in a safe harbor," she said.

The African refugee is 22 years old and eight months a long. She presented similar symptoms becuase her baby is also wrongly positioned. According to reports, the woman was escaping a life of "torture and sexual violence" in Libya, a country in which her husband was murdered.

"Ninety migrants saved by NGOs and Salvini speaks of German blackmail. Alan Kurdi with 40 refugees in Lampedusa, Open Arms with 52 rescued from Libya. Interior Minister: "Berlin asks us to accept 30 from the [Italian coastguard vessel] Gregoretti."

The Open Arms rescue ship, which remains in international waters near Lampedusa, expects that authorities in Italy or Malta allow the African shipwrecks to land.

On Saturday morning, it was reported that the Alan Kurdi vessel — which belongs to the Sea-Eye charity and has 40 rescued immigrants — is stranded in international waters off Malta, hoping that this country will allow it to dock.

In Italy, the far-right Interior Minister Matteo Salvini keeps a “Closed Ports” policy against humanitarian rescue ships, all of which can receive fines of up to 50,000 euros if they violate his provision.

This policy atmosphere is also lived in Spain, a country whose authorities banned the Open Arms vessel from restarting the active search for barges with African migrants in danger.

In addition, on July 4, the Spanish Merchant Marine warned the Open Arms rescue boat that it would face fines of up to 900,000 euros if it contravened that decision.

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