Shocking footage has emerged of the rapidly worsening situation onboard a cargo ship carrying 52 stranded migrants outside of Maltese territorial waters.
Shared by Malta Today, Captain Mohammad Shaaban issued an urgent plea to Maltese authorities let the migrants in, with water and food supplies running dangerously low onboard the vessel.
“These migrants are in very bad condition. These migrants are in very bad condition, this is an animal cargo ship. We need to help them…they need to disembark for health care, for many things, because it is simply impossible to care for them on this boat,” he said.
Footage shows the men onboard sleeping crudely in cattle cages with EU member states playing hardball over whether to grant them entry. Meanwhile, fights and arguments are breaking out on board, with the migrants growing frustrated by their uncertain fate.
For the second day in a row, Talia has been anchored off Malta’s shores waiting for a response from either Malta, Italy or Spain.
The ship, which picked up asylum seekers from Somalia and Djibouti, was allowed to enter Malta’s waters last Sunday to shelter from a storm but was told to leave the country’s waters shortly after.
Malta’s Armed Forces also allowed for a medical evacuation of two people from the ship – migrants who had survived the Libya war and days out at sea.
Several NGOs and migrant hotlines have taken to social media to pressure the Maltese government and Robert Abela to take in the migrants, who have been out at sea for seven days now.
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