A source inside of France’s Interior Ministry claims that Macron is currently trying to negotiate an agreement that, if reached, would see 151 migrants who are currently onboard the ‘Open Arms’ ship owned by Spanish NGO Proactiva land in France.
According to a report from the Madrid-based El Pais newspaper, the French government has ‘initiated discreet talks’ with the European Commission to find a solution to the ongoing situation which has seen ‘Open Arms’ denied access to ports in Italy and Malta. The vessel has been at sea for the last 13 days.
“Just like every other time this kind of situation has come up, France is taking the initiative and actively contributing to the search for a solution at the European scale to disembark and take in the rescued individuals,” one source inside of the French Interior Ministry told the Spanish newspaper.
The negotiations come after the migrant transport NGO had already requested several EU countries to petition the European Commission to spread migrants throughout the EU with the hope that it might permit them to land in Italy or Malta – both who’ve previously rejected their requests.
The NGO Proactiva’s ‘Open Arms’ seems to be utterly disinterested in landing the migrants in a safe port in Africa, of which there are many.
Italian interior minister Matteo Salvini has insisted that before he allows migrant transport vessels access to Italy’s ports, other EU member states must first agree to take in the migrants who would land.
Sources inside the Spanish government have alleged that the Spanish are also involved in a possible deal but thus far have failed to comment on what a deal would entail.
The Spanish NGO’s ship ‘Open Arms’ isn’t the only sea vessel currently trying ferry migrants coming from North Africa into Europe.
The ‘Ocean Viking’ which is operated by Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and SOS Méditerranée is also looking for a European port to dock at after collecting around 356 migrants off the coast of Libya.
Similarly to ‘Open Arms’ the ‘Ocean Viking’ has been denied entry to multiple European ports and refuses to seek out a safe port in Africa to offload the migrants.
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Author: Arthur Lyons
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