Skip to Content

Aquarius stripped of its Panama flag. Wikipedia

Migrant vessel stripped of Panama flag

Panama has revoked the registration of the NGO migrant-rescue ship Aquarius2, making it impossible for it to operate any longer in the Mediterranean. The move has dealt a "major blow" to migrant "rescue operations" off Libya's coast.

Published: September 25, 2018, 9:46 am

    Read more

    SOS Méditerranée and Doctors without Borders (MSF) said they were “reeling” from Saturday’s announcement by the Panama Maritime Authority.

    The NGOs have complained of “blatant economic and political pressure from the Italian government”, AFP reported. But the Italian government denies pressuring Panama to make the decision.

    Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini has denied turning the Aquarius2 into a “pirate” vessel.

    “It’s clear that no country wants to take the responsibility of being identified with a ship that hampers sea rescue operations, refuses coordination with the Libyan coast guard, attacks democratic governments like the Italian one, and expects to distribute clandestine migrants in Europe,” he said on Sunday night.

    Salvini said on Sunday that the ship would “never” dock in Italy. On Monday he called the Aquarius2 a “ghost ship”.

    Both NGOs have appealed to the European Union to intervene.

    But the vessel is just the latest in a string of NGO-operated migrant rescue ships Salvini has turned away from landing at Italian ports – although it is the first whose flag has been stripped by a foreign government.

    The Aquarius2 was heading for Marseille, where SOS Méditerranée has asked authorities to “exceptionally” authorise the disembarkation of the 58 migrants aboard, the NGO said later on Monday.

    SOS Méditeerranée director operations Frédéric Penard told a press conference in Paris that “the port of Marseille is the only one possible from which to set off again”.

    The vessel spent 19 days docked in the French port of Marseille after Gibraltar revoked its flag last month. It set sail again last week after having acquired Panamanian recognition. But Panama then launched “an official revocation procedure” before stripping the ship of its flag.

    Italian authorities noted on Friday that it was “floating in the Mediterranean” with migrants on board but that it was not welcome to dock in Italy.

    The two NGOs complained that “this measure condemns hundreds of men, women and children, in desperate search of safety, to drown at sea and inflicts a hard blow to the Aquarius’s humanitarian mission”.

    MSF said the Aquarius2 had saved 47 migrants including 17 minors and a pregnant woman of Libya.

    Consider donating to support our work

    Help us to produce more articles like this. FreeWestMedia is depending on donations from our readers to keep going. With your help, we expose the mainstream fake news agenda.

    Keep ​your language polite​. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in​,​ for example​, ​Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.

    If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violation​s​ of​ any​ law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.

    If your comments are subject to preview ​by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.

    We reserve the right to del​ete​ comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.

    Europe

    Retired Turkish admiral questions wisdom of Sweden and Finland joining NATO

    AnkaraRetired Turkish Rear Admiral Ali Deniz Kutluk said the constant expansion has turned NATO into a cumbersome and unmanageable organisation. The discussed inclusion in the North Atlantic Alliance of two more countries – Finland and Sweden – will make the structure even weaker, and ultimately more dangerous for current members.

    Latest Great Reset fantasy: Ban food photography!

    BerlinLast week, German Minister Volker Wissing (FDP) made a typical political mistake: Rules for thee but not for me. In order to reduce the "energy consumption" of advancing digitalisation, Wissing seriously recommended that Germans refrain from frequently posting photos of food on the internet. Then his Instagram posts surfaced.

    Spain: Toy advertisements may no longer be pink or blue

    MadridIn Catholic Spain, of all places, gender activists have won a new victory. Children's and babies' toys may now no longer be advertised in "gender-specific" colours such as pink and light blue. In Germany, woke parents are subjecting their children to the same grooming.

    Global demand for vaccines drops sharply

    Chinese biotech firm Kexing Holdings has made a fortune selling Sinovac's Chinese vaccine. A few days ago, however, it became known that the bonus payments were withheld and most of the workforce has been laid off. Exports of Chinese vaccines (Sinovac, Sinopharm, CanSino) were 97 percent lower in April than in September 2021.

    Finland will apply for NATO membership – Sweden will follow on Monday

    HelsinkiIt is now clear – Finland will apply for NATO membership on Sunday. Sweden will submit an application on Monday according to information.

    Great Reset: ‘Famine threatens to wipe out 300 million’

    BerlinThe mainstream media has repeated the simple logic regarding the supposed causal chain of the current disrupted trade and supply flows and global supply shortages: It is the aftermath of the Ukraine war, the inevitable consequences of morally justified sanctions against Russia, and repercussions of the "pandemic".

    Sweden: Large increase in individuals with intellectual disabilities

    StockholmAccording to a study published in the Swedish journal Psykologtidningen, a sharp increase in the diagnosis of mild intellectual disability is seen in Sweden. The worst affected is Örebro, where the increase is over 600 percent. At the same time, researchers warn that the IQ is falling in Sweden year by year.

    Hungary announces veto on oil embargo

    BudapestHungary has announced that it will veto the EU's planned embargo on Russian oil imports. The country will not vote for the sanctions package as it will destroy Hungary's secure and stable energy supply and make it impossible to source the oil needed for the economy, according to Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó.

    Big Tech, the top lobbyists in the EU

    BrusselsWith 97 million euros per year, Big Tech is the largest lobbying sector in the EU. With the sector's increasing financial power, its political influence has increased.

    Canadian sniper: ‘The war is a terrible disappointment’

    MontrealThe Canadian newspaper La Presse published an interview with Wali, a sniper who had returned from Ukraine. In short, "one of the best snipers in the world" fired only two shots in two months.

    Go to archive