UNHCR award to Captain and owner of Turkish ship (News)

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UNHCR award to Captain and owner of Turkish ship which rescued migrants in Mediterranean

UNHCR’s Ankara office presents its first  “Hope Refugee Award” in celebration of 20 June World Refugee Day to the Captain and owner of the Panamanian flagged Turkish ship MV Pýnar which rescued 142 African migrants in April 2009.  The ship and the rescued migrants were the subject of an ensuing stand-off between the governments of Italy and Malta regarding who would receive the migrants.  (See BBC: Italy takes in stranded migrants.  Click here.)

‘Mr Tuygun and Mr Erdogdu earned the Award for demonstrating a great sense of responsibility to assist to those in distress at sea. This is a longstanding maritime tradition as well as an obligation enshrined in international law,’ said the UNHCR Turkey office spokesman. However, in recent similar situations, the disputes between states on who should allow the disembarkation of rescued people ‘has discouraged ships and fishing boats from helping, penalising both them and the migrants.’

Click here for Maritime Journal article.

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Filed under Italy, Malta, Mediterranean, News, Turkey, UNHCR

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