After repeated requests we made starting this early morning, finally the Italian port authorities have decided to transfer the most vulnerable shipwreck survivors from Mare Jonio to a Coast Guard patrol boat to bring them ashore: they are pregnant women, mothers with children, unaccompanied minors.
We are happy for them and grateful to the men and women of the Coast Guard and to the doctors of the health personnel who diligently carried out that transshipment in such adverse marine weather conditions, as we are saying from this morning.
It would have certainly been safer doing it in a safe port or a sheltered point, protected from this extremely rough sea.
Now 34 people remain on board, including single women, men in precarious conditions as a result of abuse and torture, and in a state of post-traumatic stress.
We strongly ask that all these survivors, as well as our crew, to disembark as soon as possible: the situation remains unsafe on board. On top of the high wave motion, which is sickening all of us on board, we had a default of the evaporator and the desalination system, so that we are now out of any running water: taps aren’t working, kitchen and bathroom are unusable, and we only have bottled water. These people can’t wait their health conditions to worsen to be allowed to disembark.
Let them land, let us disembark. Everyone.