Posted on November 21, 2018 by Ilias Kiritsis
The remaining 77 migrants that had refused to disembark the Nivin, were forcibly removed when Libyan authorities raided the vessel on the evening of November 20th.
The Nivin, a Panama-flagged RoRo vessel, had originally picked up the group of migrants on its journey from Italy to Libya, before finally docking in Misurata.
The migrants, agitated over their arrival at Libya, had then refused to disembark the vessel, bringing ship operations to a standstill.
Almost a full 10 days later, Libyan authorities forcibly removed the group of migrants from the vessel, using tear gas and rubber bullets.
“A joint force raided the cargo ship and used rubber bullets and tear gas to force them off the ship. Some of those on board were wounded during disembarkation but are now in good condition. After treatment in hospital, they were all taken to a detention centre in the city.”, said in a statement to Reuters, Tawdfiq Esskair, Commander of the Libyan central region coastguard.
The migrants have reportedly been taken to the al-Kararim detention centre.
The use of force on behalf of the Libyan authorities came after they reclassified the migrants as “hijackers” for refusing to leave the ship.
The migrants that have barricaded themselves within the Ro-Ro vessel Nivin over the past five days, still refuse to leave the ship.
The migrant group claims that it is too dangerous for them to stay in Libya and keep reiterating their desire to go to Europe.
Yesterday, more than a dozen migrants agreed to the Libyan Coast Guard’s demands and were taken to a nearby detention centre.
However, the majority of the migrant group, more than 77 people in total, still refuse to leave the vessel.
Allegedly, according to a message recorded by the group, most of the migrants are ill, and they haven’t had any food or water.
The crew of the vessel has in the meantime taken refuge in the upper decks of the ship, where they remain, safe and sound, according to the most recent reports.
Original Story Below:
Over 90 migrants onboard the Panama-flagged RoRo Vessel, Nivin, are refusing to disembark the ship, bringing vessel operations to a standstill.
The vessel was en route from Italy to the Libyan port of Misurata on November the 8th, when it received a request from Italian and Maltese search and rescue authorities to investigate a nearby vessel.
Upon further investigation, the crew of the Nivin located a boat with over 90 migrants on board, that was trying to cross the Mediterranean into Italy.
The migrants boarded the Nivin, which unbeknownst to them, was at the time heading towards Libya.
Allegedly, two Syrian crew members received money from the migrants, promising them safe passage to Italy, however the ship continued its route towards Misurata.
When they arrived at port, upon discovery that they were in Libya, the migrants reportedly became aggressive and refused to cooperate with local authorities.
The situation has since then escalated.
The ship is now considered to be carrying illegal passengers, and as a result of the incident, it cannot continue its route.
Authorities have provided the migrants with food, water, blankets and other basic necessities, but the situation still remains at a standstill after three days of failed negotiations.
At the time of writing, the vessel is still docked at Misurata with no clear resolution in sight.