News: ECRE and UNHCR Concerned over the ending of Mare Nostrum without European rescue initiative to replace it.


ECRE and UNHCR have warned that ending Italy’s rescue operation Mare Nostrum without replacing it by a well-resourced European search and rescue initiative would mean more deaths at sea.

One year ago, just a few days after more than 300 people drowned off the coast of Lampedusa, Italy launched the Mare Nostrum operation to ensure search and rescue of migrants in the Mediterranean. Since then, Mare Nostrum has saved around 150,000 people.

“Everyone was horrified at the loss of lives off Lampedusa one year ago. Italy did something about it. Now this life-saving Mare Nostrum operation is at stake. Refugees, many fleeing war in Syria and oppression in Eritrea, cannot stay in lawless Libya and it is not possible for them to reach a safe place legally and safely. If Mare Nostrum ends without being replaced by a well-resourced operation whose priority is to save lives, more people will die in their attempt to reach our shores. A European effort is urgently needed, if the EU is really serious about putting an end to the deaths in the Mediterranean,” said ECRE’s Secretary General Michael Diedring.

Read the full article online via the ECRE website here: ECRE and UNHCR Concerned over the ending of Mare Nostrum without European rescue initiative to replace it.

Further news and social media coverage of this story are available via the following links:

BBC News – UK opposes future migrant rescues in Mediterranean

The Independent – UK axes support for Mediterranean migrant rescue operation

The Independent – Italy’s decision to end Mare Nostrum will put the lives of thousands of migrants and refugees at risk

Amnesty International – Is there ever a justification for leaving people to drown in the Med?

The Telegraph – Drown an immigrant to save an immigrant: why is the Government borrowing policy from the BNP?

The Guardian – Italian navy says it will continue refugee rescue mission despite plan to scrap it

The Guardian – Migrants’ tales: ‘I feel for those who were with me. They got asylum in the sea’

The Independent – European governments must come to the rescue of asylum-seekers

ECRE – Mare Nostrum to end – New Frontex operation will not ensure rescue of migrants in international waters

UNHCR – UNHCR concerned over ending of rescue operation in the Mediterranean


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