News on migration and asylum from around the region - Nouvelles de la région sur les questions de migration et d'asile

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

[Tunisia - Italy] Statewatch - Tunisian authorities undertake border control for Italy

News article dated 12 August 2014 

The Tunisian National Guard has 'rescued' many boats carrying migrants and refugees in the past few months. However, these vessels were not all in distress when they were 'rescued'.

A colonel in the National Guard's maritime section explained in an interview with the authors of this article that the current bilateral agreement with Italy foresees that the Tunisian Navy and the Tunisian National Guard should block boats carrying migrants, even if they are not in distress.

Two migrants rescued on the 5th and 7th of June respectively explained that the Tunisian National Guard diverted the boats they were in to Zarzis harbour, even though they were not in distress. But fishermen in Zarzis and Sfax report that Tunisian authorities have not responded to SOS signals they have launched after finding migrant boats that were sinking.

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