On its Two Year Anniversary, MOAS calls for #SafeAndLegalRoutes to end Deaths at Sea

Exactly two years ago, on 30 August 2014, MOAS conducted its first rescue operation in the Mediterranean, saving the lives of some 250 Syrians and Palestinians, including 40 children, escaping the brutality of war.

Since then the MOAS crews have rescued and assisted over 25,000 men, women and children risking their lives in search of a better future.

The horrors MOAS has been witness to only serve to reinforce our belief that no one deserves to die at sea. Today, with two years’ experience on the frontlines of this, the most devastating humanitarian catastrophe of our generation, MOAS calls for the creation of safe and legal alternatives to the deadly sea crossing, to ensure that those seeking to pursue their right to asylum are able to do so without risking their lives.

On Monday 29 August, a record number of 6,500 people have been rescued in one single day in the Mediterranean. Had search and rescue assets not been present, today there would have been a global outcry for urgent action to be taken.

As the world grows ever more desensitised to recurring tragedies at sea, our conviction that #SafeAndLegalRoutes are the only conceivable way forward has been cemented by our experiences on the maritime crossings. We call, therefore, on the international community not to allow this unnecessary loss of life to become ‘the new normal’ when it is so clearly avoidable.

MOAS was founded as a disaster relief organisation, the first private search and rescue NGO of its kind in the Mediterranean, designed to mitigate the deadly consequences of the migration crisis. Two years on we are still dealing with these same consequences, and while stricter border controls, deteriorating conditions in transit countries, such as Libya, Turkey and Greece and a lack of alternatives are forcing asylum seekers to take still more dangerous routes, both on land and at sea, sustainable solutions are yet to be established.

It is time to radically rethink the global migration ‘crisis’.

On the eve of September’s two decisive summits, when world leaders will gather to find definitive solutions to global migration issues, MOAS calls on international decision-makers to think not in terms of numbers, but rather to focus on the individual, tangible experiences that MOAS comes across on a daily basis.

It is only by treating the hundreds of thousands like the deserving individuals they are that dignified and humanitarian solutions can truly be reached.

Join our call for #SafeAndLegalRoutes; Support our life-saving mission in the Mediterranean Sea – visit moas.eu/donate

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For more information please contact:

MOAS
Maria Teresa Sette, pr@moas.eu, +356 79849591
Paula Galea, pr@moas.eu, +356 99408209