The rescue vessel Ocean Viking has rescued 109 people from the Mediterranean. The aid organizations SOS Méditerraneé and Doctors Without Borders announced this. In a first action 48 women, men, children and babies from a wooden boat, which drove about 100 kilometers north of the Libyan coast, were recovered. Later, the Ocean Viking has taken on board another 61 refugees from a dinghy.
Which port the ship with the rescued can control, remained initially open. Only last Saturday, with the permission of the Italian authorities, the ship had brought 82 migrants to Lampedusa. SOS Méditerraneé and Doctors Without Borders then announced that they would be back for a rescue mission with the "Ocean Viking"
The new center-left government in Italy has indicated a change in Italian refugee policy with the Ocean Viking entry permit. Under the former Foreign Minister Matteo Salvini of the right-wing Lega, the attitude in the refugee and migration policy had hardened. For example, Salvini had repeatedly banned rescue vessels from bringing migrants to Lampedusa.
In addition, the Italian Coast Guard claimed to have saved 90 refugees on the night of Tuesday. They had been taken on board in coordination with Malta in the Maltese rescue area. Italy then asked Malta's navy to take over the rescued, but received no response.