Monday, 17 July 2017

Draft migrant NGO code sets 11 rules

11 rules have just been submitted by the Italian Government to the EU, to set a Code of Conduct for NGO’s engaged in cooperation activities in the Mediterranean basin. Failure tu comply with these rules may result in the NGO’s denial to dock any Italian harbour.  

  1. "Absolute prohibition" for humanitarian ships to enter Libyan waters, which can only be reached "if there is a clear danger for human life at sea".
  2. Not to make phone calls or send luminous signals to facilitate the departure and the embarkation of boats carrying migrants, with "the obvious intention of not facilitating contacts with traffickers".
  3. Not transporting migrants on other ships, be they Italian or belonging to international organisations, except in an emergency situation.
  4. And after rescues the NGO ships "will have to complete the operation by taking the migrants to a safe port".
  5. Obligation to receive official police officers for inquiries related to trafficking in human beings.
  6. Not to hinder search and rescue (SAR) operations by the Libyan Coast Guard, to make known the funding sources for their rescue activities.
  7. Declare sources of funding for rescue activities at sea.
  8. To notify the flag-flying country's maritime coordination centre of the intervention, "so that this State is informed on the ship's activities and can assume responsibility also for the purposes of maritime safety".
  9. Holding a certification attesting the technical suitability for rescue activities.
  10. Obligation to cooperate honestly with the public security authorities of the migrant landing site, providing - for example - , before arrival, documents on the operation and on-board health status.
  11. Duty to transmit all information of inquiry to the Italian police authorities, while delivering any evidence that could constitute an illegal act.