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Italy says it could rescue migrants on Monday



Italy is conducting tests on 180 migrants who were rescued in the Mediterranean to transfer them to a quarantine vessel in Sicily, a source told the Interior Ministry on Saturday.

Migrants have been on the Ocean Viking ship operated by SOS Mediterranee for over a week, with fights and suicide attempts aboard which were given charity to declare the state of emergency on Friday.

A medical team sent by authorities in Pozzallo, Sicily "noted the absence of special health problems and also reported that some tensions that had been registered on the ship are being overcome," the ministry source said.

The medical team tests the migrants for the COVID-1

9 virus, after which they will be transferred to a quarantine ship currently in Porto Empedocle, also in Sicily.

"The situation is being closely monitored for the relocation of migrants, scheduled for Monday, July 6, on the Moby Zaza ship," the source said.

Ocean Viking, which has been in limbo in the Mediterranean south of Sicily, has been waiting for permission from Italy or Malta to relieve migrants in a safe harbor.

 Migrants are rescued by members French NGO SOS Mediterranee off the coast of Lampedusa 25 June 2020 Migrants rescued by members of the French NGO SOS Mediterranee off the coast of Lampedusa on 25 June 2020 Photo: AFP / Shahzad ABDUL

Tensions have increased it Last week, as an AFP reporter aboard the boat is witnessing, migrants have become increasingly desperate to reach shore. Others have been worried about not being able to call their families to let them know they were safe.

SOS Mediteranee said in a statement on Saturday that "the only assistance proposed has been a visit by a physician and a cultural communicator who spoke to the survivors but is unable to present a solution for their ascent." [19659002] The migrants, which include Pakistanis, North Africans, Eritreans, Nigerians and others, were picked up after fleeing Libya in four separate rescues by the sea Viking June 25 and 30.

Migrants include 25 minors, most of whom are accompanied by adults, and two women, one of whom is pregnant.

More than 100,000 migrants tried to cross the Mediterranean last year with more than 1,200 dying in the trial, according to the International Organization for Migration.

The arrival of summer and more favorable conditions at sea may lead to an increase in attempts to cross the Mediterranean with which he hopes to reach Europe.


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