We, the undersigned, declare the following:
As members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, we hereby express our support and solidarity with the Search and Rescue NGO Sea-Watch and its recent decision to enter Italian waters. After two weeks of odyssey on the Mediterranean Sea with over 50 rescued and traumatised people on board, Sea-Watch had to take this decision, regardless of the Italian blockade. We acknowledge that the current Italian policy of isolation creates new problems rather than solving any. The Italian Government refused other European Union countries’ offers to take in refugees rescued at sea. They cynically risk the well-being of these refugees rather than opening their ports.
We cannot accept the fact that people are dying in the Mediterranean Sea and European Union member States are hindering search and rescue. We need solutions for the political deadlock within the European Union regarding any potential common answer to the humanitarian crisis. The Dublin system is a system of failure which member States have to overcome by creating a system of fair shared responsibility.