Quelle: The Libya Observer
Libyan Navy explains interception of Doctors Without Borders ship
Doctors Without Borders (MSF) condemned the Libyan Navy’s boat attack on its ship (Bourbon Argos) which it said was on a search and rescue mission off the Libyan coast.
On Friday, the MSF said in a statement that it was ticked off by the “violent act” against the humanitarian and medical organization, which only aims at conducting rescue operations in the Mediterranean to save the lives of the immigrants, who flee wars, poverty, and catastrophes.
“On board the ship, there were the crewmembers, MSF staffers, and the rescue team, yet no one was hurt.” The MSF indicated, adding that neither the identity nor the ends of the attackers have been recognized although they seemed professional and well trained.
The MSF coordinator, Stefano Argenziano, said the assault was dangerous and disturbing as it nearly put the crewmembers’ lives in danger.
On the other hand, the Spokesman of the Libyan Naval Forces in Tripoli, Ayoub Qasim, denied the news about an intentional attack on the MSF ship, saying the whole incident was some warning shots fired by a Libyan Navy boat as it was patrolling off the Libyan coast.
“When the Libyan Navy personnel asked the MSF ship to stop, it refused, so they fired warning shots then they withdrew after they knew the ship belonged to the EU Operation Sophia.” Qasim added, saying investigation is underway.
The assault on Bourbon Argos took place 24 nautical miles to the north of the Libyan coast on August 17. The attack is said to be launched by an armed group, whose members climbed on the deck of the ship, fired some gunshots and then left, according to the MSF statement.
siehe auch: Libya Herald
Migrant rescue ship attacked on the high seas
By Ajnadin Mustafa.
An international migrant rescue ship was attacked and boarded in international waters, Medecins Sans Frontiers has revealed today.
The assault on the MSF’s Bourbon Argos was made 24 miles north of the Libyan coast on 17 August but the charity has only now revealed details.
According to MSF, at 9.15am an unidentified launch approached their vessel at high speed and opened fire from 400 or 500 metres away. Some rounds struck the bridge. The crew took refuge in a safe room as the attackers prepared to board the Bourbon Argos, which has no migrants aboard at the time.
The intruders spent some 50 minutes on the ship before leaving, having apparently taken nothing nor damaged any equipment. The charity did not say if any attempt was made to break into the safe room. It is unclear how many MSF crew were aboard.
“Although we don’t know the identity of the attackers or their motivation, our initial assessment of the facts shows that they were professional and well-trained,” said Stefano Argenziano, MSF operations’ coordinator. “This was a serious and worrying attack, with shooting toward our boat which could have put our staff in acute physical danger.”
Libyan naval forces in Tripoli have made no comment on the incident. The EU’s Operation Sophia has been arresting suspected people smugglers who have been taken to Italy for trial.
Libya’s territorial waters are recognised internationally to extend for 12 miles. However Muammar Qaddafi once claimed that the whole of the Gulf of Sirte as Libyan territory.