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PACE inquiry into responsibility for loss of life in the Mediterranean Sea: visit to Malta

Strasbourg, 14.12.2011 – Tineke Strik (Netherlands, SOC), who is carrying out an inquiry for the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) into “Lives lost in the Mediterranean Sea: who is responsible?”, in particular for the deaths of ‘boat people’ fleeing Libya, will make a fact-finding visit to Malta from 15 to 16 December 2011.

During her visit, the rapporteur will meet refugees who arrived from Libya after January 2011 to gather testimony on their experiences, and will meet officials from the Maltese armed forces who are involved in organising rescues. She will also meet representatives of NGOs and European and UN officials dealing with refugee matters on the island, and the Maltese delegation to PACE.

Mrs Strik’s investigation was sparked by news reports that migrants and refugees have perished after their distress calls were ignored, and in June the PACE Migration Committee appointed her to look into the issue. Since then, she has visited Rome and Brussels, and hosted a parliamentary hearing on the subject. Her report is expected in the spring of 2012.