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  • Drifting African migrants are rescued, Mediterranean Sea, 2020.

    Drifting African migrants are rescued, Mediterranean Sea, 2020. | Photo: Twitter/ @ANNAQuercia

Published 27 June 2020
Opinion

She was traveling in a rubber boat that had 6 corpses and over 90 African migrants on board.

The Italian NGO Mediterranea denounced that Libyan coast guards intercepted a dinghy with migrants and sent their occupants back to the Maghreb country.

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Mediterranean Sea: Countries Fail to Help Migrants in Distress

The rubber dinghy, which was 52 miles north of the Libyan coastal city of Misurata, was carrying 95 migrants and about six bodies.

On Friday, a woman gave birth to a baby, confirmed the International Organization for Migration (IOM) spokeswoman Safa Msehli.

The humanitarian vessel Mare Jonio received a mayday message mentioning a dinghy in distress and headed to rescue its occupants. The Libyan Coast Guard, however, arrived early.

The NGO Mediterranea Saving Humans regretted the return of the woman and her newborn son to Libya, a country that has lived in violence since the overthrow of President Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

"No one should be returned to Libya. Let alone one who suffers the cruel fate of being born in despair in the middle of the sea," the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) spokeswoman Carlotta Sami said.

Humanitarian organizations criticize the 2017 agreement between Italy and Libya to contain the migratory flow through the central Mediterranean.

After a short trip to Tripoli this week, however, Italy’s Foreign Affairs Minister Luigi Di Maio indicated that the agreement will be changed to guarantee the safeguarding of human rights.

Meanwhile, humanitarian NGOs continue to protect lives in distress. Currently, the SOS Meditarrenee’s ship Ocean Viking has 118 rescued people on board and the Sea Eye’s vessel Alan Kurdi sailed again after having been blocked by authorities in Palermo since May 5.

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