human development, social justice and sustainable social systems

EU must agree on fair disembarkation

Caritas Europa signs joint letter to governments

Caritas Europa, jointly with over 50 organisations, is calling on EU countries to put an end to the tragedy that is unfolding in the Mediterranean Sea, where the lack of rescue operations to save migrants and the criminalisation of NGOs’ actions is leading to deaths.

Since January 2018, at least 2,500 women, children and men have drowned in the Mediterranean trying to reach safety in Europe.

In addition, rescued ships carrying vulnerable migrants such as children are stranded at Sea during weeks while EU countries are struggling to determine in which port they should be disembarked.

This is not Europe’s finest hour. This must change.

Ahead of the Informal Justice and Home Affairs Council of February 7th, we call on EU governments to reach an agreement on timely disembarkation arrangements that will save lives and respect people’s fundamental rights, including their right to seek asylum. Specifically, we ask the Council to:

  • Support search and rescue operations;
  • Adopt timely and predictable disembarkation arrangements that foster solidarity among EU countries;
  • End return to Libya, where refugees and migrants are regularly detained in horrific conditions that violate their basic human rights.

joint statement


Download full joint letter