- Title: 104 migrants disembark after Italian police seize German rescue ship
- Date: 2nd September 2019
- Summary: POZZALLO, ITALY (SEPTEMBER 2, 2019) (REUTERS) POLICEMEN ON DOCK IN FRONT OF RESCUE SHIP 'ELEONORE' VARIOUS OF WOMAN HELPING MIGRANTS TO DISEMBARK POLICEMAN / MIGRANTS SEATED UNDER RED CROSS TENT MIGRANTS WAITING TO DISEMBARK FINANCE POLICEMEN ON DOCK / MIGRANT DISEMBARKING VARIOUS OF MIGRANTS SEATED UNDER RED CROSS TENT (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) DOCTOR, VINCENZO MORELLO, SAYING: "The health situation (of migrants) is good. We did not go on board due to the lack of space, we visited them in the quarantine area, in the tent. The general conditions of migrants were good, just several cases of scabies due to promiscuity. We will do the treatment (against scabies) on everyone but thank goodness all is well." FINANCE POLICEMEN ON DOCK (SOUNDBITE) (Italian) DOCTOR, VINCENZO MORELLO, SAYING: "There are 104 people, all males and several minors. They come from Sudan and Nigeria, there are some Egyptians and some people from Chad. " MIGRANTS BEING ASSISTED AS THEY DISEMBARK MIGRANT TAKING A SEAT UNDER RED CROSS TENT / CARABINIERI MILITARY POLICEMEN LOOKING AT SEATED MIGRANTS SUSPECTED SMUGGLERS GETTING INTO POLICE CAR ESCORTED BY POLICEMEN POLICE CAR LEAVING MORELLO AND MEMBERS OF UNHCR (UNITED NATIONS HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR REFUGEES) TALKING TO SEATED MIGRANTS BUS AND OFFICIAL ON DOCK MIGRANT BEING GIVEN BOTTLE OF WATER AND BOARDING BUS OFFICIALS AND TENTS ON DOCK
- Embargoed: 16th September 2019 16:22
- Keywords: Migrants Pozzallo Italy rescue ship Eleonore Mission Lifeline Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini Malta European Union
- Location: POZZALLO, ITALY
- City: POZZALLO, ITALY
- Country: Italy
- Topics: Asylum/Immigration/Refugees,Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA001AUYSW93
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Italian police on Monday (September 2) seized a German migrant rescue ship that had been stranded at sea for a week with 104 migrants aboard.
The migrants disembarked after the ship's captain had earlier set course for the Sicilian port of Pozzallo, sparking a new stand-off between rescuers and Italy's interior minister just as he looks set to lose his job.
Matteo Salvini, leader of the far-right League, signed a decree last week banning the Eleonore from entering Italian waters as part of his closed-door policy on migrants arriving by boat from north Africa.
The Eleonore's captain, Claus-Peter Reisch, said he had decided to enter Italian waters and head for shelter because of storms. The ship is operated by the German charity Mission Lifeline.
After disembarking all the migrants were checked by members of the Italian Red Cross.
"The general conditions of migrants were good, just several cases of scabies due to promiscuity", Doctor Vincenzo Morello told Reuters.
"There are 104 people, all males and several minors. They come from Sudan and Nigeria, there are some Egyptians and some people from Chad", he added.
Two suspected smugglers were arrested by the Italian Police.
A succession of charity vessels have struggled over the past year to bring migrants rescued at sea to Italian shores as Salvini has taken a tough line.
He is maintaining that line even though his party is on the verge of losing power after its coalition with the anti-establishment 5-Star party broke down. 5-Star is now in talks to form a new government with the centre-left opposition Democratic Party (PD), which is critical of Salvini's stance.
"Laws and borders will be respected. If someone thinks he can ignore them without consequences, he is making a big mistake... I am doing and will do everything to defend Italy," Salvini said in a statement on the Eleonore's attempt to dock.
Salvini has been using the issue of immigration to try to drive a wedge between 5-Star and the PD, and has called for a snap election.
(Production: Antonio Parrinello, Carmelo Camilli, Fabiano Franchitti)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2019. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None