EU ITALY MIGRANTS Migrants remain aboard Sea-Watch rescue ship

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The charity ship Sea-Watch remained outside the Italian port of Lampedusa with 42 migrants still aboard after defying an order from Rome to stay away and provoking the ire of Interior Minister Matteo Salvini.

The captain of the German-owned boat, which flies the Dutch flag, decided to head to the island on Wednesday because the situation on board was “now more desperate than ever!” the group said in a statement.

According to a decree approved in June, the Interior Ministry has the power to deny access to territorial waters to vessels that it considers are a risk to security or public order, and to fine them.

Salvini, who heads the far-right League, has repeatedly accused charity rescuers of being complicit with people smugglers and has closed Italy’s ports to their boats and the Interior minister has said the migrants can only get off the ship if other EU countries agree to host them.

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