Armed Forces of Malta patrol boat P51 early today disembarked in Malta 85 persons who were rescued from a wooden boat which the army said was in difficulty.
On Friday evening, the patrol boat’s crew was requested to assist and rescue the migrants who included six women and a boy. They arrived at Haywharf at around 9.00am. A medical team was on stand-by on shore, however the migrants did not need medical assistance as they were in a good state of health.
Members of the Police Migration Section accompanied the migrants to the Marsa Open Centre on three buses.
Here, the migration officers carried out the normal procedures in such cases to gather information on them, which is then inserted in an information system, which is jointly operated by EU member states.
In the coming days, the Migration Section will speak with the new migrant arrivals to gather more details as part of its investigations.
This group of migrants met a different destiny that another group who left Libya on Thursday on a boat which encountered rough seas. The UN Refugees Agency said that at least 65 migrants died in the ordeal, sixteen were rescued. The agency said that these migrants said they departed from Zuwara in Libya.
In the wake of concern on the Libya situation, the UNHCR appealed to European countries to act in order to avoid the deaths of migrants.
“It is really a desperate situation. We have been calling on states for building up search and rescue capacity in the Mediterranean, we have been showing our concern about not having any boats to rescue these people. We have also been calling that Libya is not a safe place to return these desperate refugees and migrants, and we hope that our calls are heard to save more lives, as we continue to see more deaths in the Med,” Babar Baloch, spokesperson for UNHCR said.
UNHCR said that some 164 persons who tried to cross from Africa towards Europe died at sea during the first four months of this year.