Saturday, 16/12/2017 | 3:26 UTC+0
Libyan Newswire

Written question – VP/HR – Attacks in international waters by the Libyan Coast Guard on European NGOs rescuing refugees in the Mediterranean – E-006077/2017

According to reports, on 27 September 2017 members of the NGOs MISSION LIFELINE and Proactiva Open Arms (based in Germany and Spain respectively) were distributing humanitarian aid to refugees aboard a Dutch-registered vessel in international waters 19 miles off the coast of Libya when they came under attack from the Libyan Coast Guard; coast guard officers fired shots and forcibly boarded the ship without its captain’s consent.

The officers attempted to force the crew to turn over the refugees they had rescued, in violation of the principle of non-refoulement, as laid down in international law, which bans the repatriation of individuals to countries with a record of serious human rights infringements, such as Libya.

Given that the Libyan Coast Guard consistently impedes rescue missions and endangers the lives of refugees and aid workers:

1. What urgent measures are being planned to guarantee the safety of European citizens and refugees in international waters off the coast of Libya?
2. What steps will be taken to bring those responsible for this criminal act to justice?
3. How much money has the EU made available to the Libyan Coast Guard and what other measures has it taken to support it?

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