Italy: Authorities claim NGO workers on Iuventus communicated with human traffickers

Trapani Prosecutor Ambrogio Cartosio announced that investigations in the case of the impounded German NGO migrant rescue ship Iuventa have led authorities to believe that the vessel's crew committed «'serious indications of culpability' in relation to the existence of the crime of illegal immigration,» speaking to the press in Trapani, Wednesday. Cartosio stated, «Some meetings between so... Еще-called traffickers — that is, those who escorted illegal immigrants to the Iuventa — and members of Iuventa's crew have been documented.» According to Italian authorities, the Iuventa crew would not just «save some individuals who are in immediate life-threatening conditions,» but would mostly «transfer» illegal immigrants picked-up from Libyan traffickers' boats «on board of other ships that can be those belonging to the Marine Military or other NGOs.» Cartosio noted that «the alleged offences,» that is, those related to illegal immigration, «have been committed by individuals who operate on board of the Iuventa; however, it is necessary going more into the detail of probative emergencies in order to identify the single responsibilities."The Iuventa was impounded overnight during the night into Wednesday, in Lampedusa, by the Italian coastguard as part of a «routine check,» amidst a new NGO protocol in Italy. Italy's new code of conduct for NGOs that run migrant rescue missions in the Mediterranean was signed by just three of the nine organisations on Monday. Some of the aid groups have criticised the new rules as making it more difficult for them to save lives. Jugend Rettet was among the organisations who refused to sign the protocol. The code of conduct was created to prevent aid groups from unwittingly aiding human traffickers. The Italian interior minister said those who refuse to sign the rules will be «excluded from the system of sea rescues.»
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