Sat, Jul 07, 2018 - Page 14 News List

Migrant rescue boat arrives in Spain after rejection by Italy and Malta
遭義大利和馬爾他拒絕停泊 難民救援船抵達西班牙

Migrants aboard the Open Arms rejoice as the ship approaches the port of Barcelona, Spain, on Wednesday.

Photo: AP

A humanitarian rescue boat carrying 60 migrants rescued off Libya docked in Barcelona on Wednesday after being turned away by Malta and Italy, in the latest example of European divisions on immigration.

Spain’s new Socialist prime minister, Pedro Sanchez, had offered for the second time in a month to take in migrants rejected by Italy and Malta, which where both closer.

Irregular immigration across the Mediterranean has fallen dramatically, with about 45,000 people making it to Europe across the sea this year compared to over a million in 2015, but politically it has become ever more divisive.

Last week, European Union states agreed to tighten their external borders and spend more in the Middle East and North Africa to bring down the number of migrants and to set up new centers to handle new arrivals.

Last month, Spain had accepted 629 migrants on another charity rescue boat, the Aquarius. Barcelona mayor Ada Colau tweeted that Wednesday’s arrivals “could have died, but they are alive.” “This is the Mediterranean Sea and the Europe we want, where life is celebrated and protected,” she added.

The migrants, including five women and four children, are of various nationalities, including Palestinians, Syrians and Guineans. Most Spaniards are in favor of welcoming and helping to integrate refugees, and feel that their previous, conservative government did not do enough, pollsters say.









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