A rescuer carries a migrant child, intercepted off the coast in the Mediterranean Sea, after arriving on a rescue boat at the port of Malaga, southern Spain, October 19, 2018. REUTERS/Jon Nazca
A rescuer carries a migrant child, intercepted off the coast in the Mediterranean Sea, after arriving on a rescue boat at the port of Malaga. REUTERS

Migrant campaign ship confronts Italy in the Mediterranean


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A Mediterranean coalition of campaigners against Italy’s hardline migration policies have bought a ship in a crowdfunding appeal to shame authorities into rescuing stranded migrants off the North African coast.

The group, Mediterranea Saving Humans, raised more than 250,000 euros in three weeks, to buy and launch the Italian-flagged Mare Jonio to raise the alarm about migrant boats in distress in the Mediterranean Sea.

Its first mission launched on October 4 from the southern Italian island of Sicily and succeeded in pressuring the Italian Coast guard into rescuing 70 people aboard a dinghy eight days later, according to the group.

“The presence of Mediterranea was fundamental in raising attention to what is really happening in the waters south of Sicily and to prevent our governments from turning their backs to tragedies that call upon human compassion,” the group wrote on its website.

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Read more: 

Refugee deaths in Libya highlight the world's complacency

'He died two times': African migrants face death in Libyan detention centres 

Far-right party threatens to tarnish Italian democracy 

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A second mission aimed at “monitoring and denouncing” the inaction of the Italian coastguard in the face of migrants in need of rescue was launched on Thursday.

It aims to respond to a crackdown on migrant rescue ships in July by Italy’s deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini, who has repeatedly accused NGOs of providing a “taxi service” for migrants.

“Good news, listen up! A ship organised by NGOs is going to roam the Mediterranean looking for migrants that want to come to our shores,” he wrote on his Facebook page in response to initiative. “They can do what they want, go where they want, but for them to come to Italy… never!”

The last migrant rescue ship operating in the area, the Aquarius, saw its Panamanian flag revoked in September following alleged pressure from the Italian government.

According to NGOs, the EU's policy of aiding Libyan authorities to intercept migrants and return them to detention is "inhuman".

Nearly 2,000 migrants have lost their lives so far this year attempting to reach Europe, according to the International Organization for Migration.

The campaign ship is an initiative by Spanish, German and Italian NGOs, backed by a left-wing politicians and artists.

Erasmo Palazzotto, a parliamentarian and one of the initiators of Mediterranea’s mission, said the group was backed by “thousands of people… to save our humanity”.

“We are the only ones left, but we are not alone,” he wrote on Twitter

The specs

Engine: 4-cylinder 2.0L TSI
Transmission: Dual clutch 7-speed
Power: 320HP / 235kW
Torque: 400Nm
Price: from $49,709
On sale: now

Company Profile

Name: HyveGeo
Started: 2023
Founders: Abdulaziz bin Redha, Dr Samsurin Welch, Eva Morales and Dr Harjit Singh
Based: Cambridge and Dubai
Number of employees: 8
Industry: Sustainability & Environment
Funding: $200,000 plus undisclosed grant
Investors: Venture capital and government

Pupils in Abu Dhabi are learning the importance of being active, eating well and leading a healthy lifestyle now and throughout adulthood, thanks to a newly launched programme 'Healthy Lifestyle'.

As part of the Healthy Lifestyle programme, specially trained coaches from City Football Schools, along with Healthpoint physicians have visited schools throughout Abu Dhabi to give fun and interactive lessons on working out regularly, making the right food choices, getting enough sleep and staying hydrated, just like their favourite footballers.

Organised by Manchester City FC and Healthpoint, Manchester City FC’s regional healthcare partner and part of Mubadala’s healthcare network, the ‘Healthy Lifestyle’ programme will visit 15 schools, meeting around 1,000 youngsters over the next five months.

Designed to give pupils all the information they need to improve their diet and fitness habits at home, at school and as they grow up, coaches from City Football Schools will work alongside teachers to lead the youngsters through a series of fun, creative and educational classes as well as activities, including playing football and other games.

Dr Mai Ahmed Al Jaber, head of public health at Healthpoint, said: “The programme has different aspects - diet, exercise, sleep and mental well-being. By having a focus on each of those and delivering information in a way that children can absorb easily it can help to address childhood obesity."

FROM THE ASHES

Director: Khalid Fahad

Starring: Shaima Al Tayeb, Wafa Muhamad, Hamss Bandar

Rating: 3/5

KEY DATES IN AMAZON'S HISTORY

July 5, 1994: Jeff Bezos founds Cadabra Inc, which would later be renamed to Amazon.com, because his lawyer misheard the name as 'cadaver'. In its earliest days, the bookstore operated out of a rented garage in Bellevue, Washington

July 16, 1995: Amazon formally opens as an online bookseller. Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought becomes the first item sold on Amazon

1997: Amazon goes public at $18 a share, which has grown about 1,000 per cent at present. Its highest closing price was $197.85 on June 27, 2024

1998: Amazon acquires IMDb, its first major acquisition. It also starts selling CDs and DVDs

2000: Amazon Marketplace opens, allowing people to sell items on the website

2002: Amazon forms what would become Amazon Web Services, opening the Amazon.com platform to all developers. The cloud unit would follow in 2006

2003: Amazon turns in an annual profit of $75 million, the first time it ended a year in the black

2005: Amazon Prime is introduced, its first-ever subscription service that offered US customers free two-day shipping for $79 a year

2006: Amazon Unbox is unveiled, the company's video service that would later morph into Amazon Instant Video and, ultimately, Amazon Video

2007: Amazon's first hardware product, the Kindle e-reader, is introduced; the Fire TV and Fire Phone would come in 2014. Grocery service Amazon Fresh is also started

2009: Amazon introduces Amazon Basics, its in-house label for a variety of products

2010: The foundations for Amazon Studios were laid. Its first original streaming content debuted in 2013

2011: The Amazon Appstore for Google's Android is launched. It is still unavailable on Apple's iOS

2014: The Amazon Echo is launched, a speaker that acts as a personal digital assistant powered by Alexa

2017: Amazon acquires Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, its biggest acquisition

2018: Amazon's market cap briefly crosses the $1 trillion mark, making it, at the time, only the third company to achieve that milestone


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