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Mediterranean: German rescue vessel takes on 100 migrants in distress


A Mission Lifeline boat has rescued about 100 people from distress. Her captain was in court a year ago in Malta for a rescue mission.

The German rescue ship Eleonore has recorded about 100 migrants on the Mediterranean. The people were rescued on Monday while their boat was sinking, said the spokesman for the Dresden aid organization Mission Lifeline, Axel Steier. The organization supports Eleonore, whose owner and captain is Claus-Peter Reisch. "I am very happy that we were able to save all people, it was literally in the last second," Reisch tweeted.

31 miles north of the Libyan coast we were able to save the people. Thanks to all who support! We now need a safe haven.

- Claus-Peter Reisch (@ClausReisch) August 26, 2019

The organization also reports that while deploying 31 nautical miles off the Libyan coast, a Libyan Coast Guard military ship approached 50 meters and threatened the crew. There is no independent confirmation for this information.

Reisch was in the headlines because he had to answer for a rescue operation in Malta in court. The captain from Bavaria took more than 230 migrants aboard the lifeline in June 2018. After that, the ship, which sailed under the Dutch flag, was blocked for days on the high seas. In May, Reisch was fined a fine in Malta for incorrect registration of the ship. The Lifeline is still there on the chain. Reisch had appealed the verdict.

The Eleonore is a pleasure craft that operates under the German flag as a motor yacht. Since Saturday, it was in the search and rescue zone in the international waters off the Libyan coast, where aid organizations repeatedly rescue migrants from unseaworthy boats and bring them to Europe.

Recently, several rescue organizations had problems finding a haven where migrants could land. Therefore, they had to stay at sea for up to three weeks. The Eleonore is also looking for a place to land. "We need a safe haven now," Reisch tweeted. The captain asked the German Federal Government for mediation.

Source: zeit

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