UN urges EU states to take in stranded mi­grants

The Morning Call - - NATION & WORLD -

BRUSSELS — The United Na­tions refugee agency ur­gently ap­pealed to Euro­pean gov­ern­ments Tues­day to let two mi­grant res­cue ships dis­em­bark more than 500 pas­sen­gers who re­main stranded at sea as coun­tries bicker over who should take re­spon­si­bil­ity for them.

The peo­ple res­cued while at­tempt­ing to cross the Mediter­ranean Sea from North Africa are on ships char­tered by hu­man­i­tar­ian aid groups that the Ital­ian govern­ment has banned from its ter­ri­tory. The ar­chi­pel­ago na­tion of Malta also has re­fused to let the ships into its ports.

It’s un­clear where they might find safe har­bor, even though the Ital­ian is­land of Lampe­dusa ap­pears clos­est. About 150 of the res­cued pas­sen­gers have been on the Span­ish-flagged char­ity ship the Open Arms since they were plucked from the Mediter­ranean 13 days ago.

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