“This is a political declaration of intent to criminalize solidarity, and it has a deadly consequence: people die, when they could be saved,” said the crew of the vessel Iuventa.
Humanitarian organizations are rejecting what they say is an attempt to criminalize lifesaving aid to migrants and refugees at sea after Italian prosecutors charged three groups with aiding and abetting illegal immigration through their rescue operations in the Mediterranean.
Over 20 people are facing up to 20 years in prison.
The sea has been ominously dubbed a refugee graveyard as frequent shipwrecks of vessels crossing from Libya, as well as a drop in rescue missions, have claimed scores of lives. The United Nations says that in 2020 alone hundreds died along the route. Continue reading