Sea-Watch 3 Captain Carola Rackete warned that conditions onboard of the migrant rescue vessel were worsening, after she defied Italy's government ban on migrant arrivals entering Italian territorial waters on Wednesday. The 31-year old captain was speaking to journalists who boarded the Sea Watch anchored near the Italian island of Lampedusa on Thursday.
«The situation onboard has been worsening... Еще every day, especially the psychological situation. We have had people who threatened to throw themselves over board, and we have many people who have suffered from post-traumatic stress disease. And also people who have told their history of past suicide attempts. So the psychological situation of the people was getting worse and worse, so we had to enter to prevent any harm to people's lives», she stressed.
Rackete confirmed that Italian law enforcement officers boarded the vessel, but the government has not provided any assistance to migrants to date. The vessel demanded assistance and a port of safety in either the Netherlands, Germany, Spain, France or Malta, according to the captain.
Rackete, who blamed Rome for failing to take responsibility for the ongoing crisis, hoped to transfer the migrants to Lampedusa using the Sea Watch inflatable rafts, but the Italian financial authorities asked her to wait as a solution was apparently close.
Her decision to enter Italian waters came just a day after the European Court of Human Rights rejected an appeal from the charity to implement 'interim measures' which would force Italy to allow the ship to dock in the country.
Italian interior Minister Matteo Salvini, who so far refused to allow the migrants to disembark, replied: «There's an outlaw who's steering an outlaw ship who says she has no time to waste. My patience has a limit.»
In the meantime, a delegation of Italian MPs reached the Sea Watch in open water on Thursday, and vowed they would remain on board until the migrants were granted entry, in an attempt to bring the deadlock to an end.