Last Mediterranean refugee rescue ship Aquarius ends operations – MSF

The last refugee rescue ship working in the Mediterranean Sea, Aquarius, has ended operations, French NGO Doctors Without Borders (MSF) has said, blaming harassment from Italy and other countries. “The end of our operations onboard the Aquarius will mean more death in the sea, deaths that are avoidable and without witnesses,” Nelke Mander, MSF’s general director, said late on Thursday. The decision to moor the Aquarius is the result of a “constant denigration, smearing and obstruction campaign led” against MSF and SOS Mediterranean by the Italian government and supported by other European countries, according to the NGO. The ship was commissioned in February 2016 and has rescued almost 30,000 people in international waters off Libya, Malta and Italy. She has remained moored in Marseilles since October 4, after transferring 58 migrants to Malta during her last mission, Reuters said.