Italy to allow Ocean Viking with 180 migrants on board to dock in Sicily

ITALY’S authorities have said that the Ocean Viking ship will be cleared to dock in Sicily after being stranded at sea since late June with 180 migrants on board.

The rescue ship has been told to sail to the Italian port of Porto Empedocle on the island of Sicily to allow the migrants to disembark on Monday.

The onboard migrants include North Africans, Pakistanis and Nigerians and at least 25 of the group are minors. Two women are also on board, one of whom is pregnant.

Medics from Italy had boarded the ship earlier to test for Covid-19.

SOS Mediterranee described “relief on the #OceanViking” in a post on social media as passengers learnt of the permission to dock.

The ship had already made pleas to Italy and Malta to be allowed to dock and after being denied permission six migrants on board attempted to kill themselves, SOS Mediterranee said.

It is currently unclear whether the 180 migrants will be quarantined at the port or taken to asylum seeker centres in Sicily.

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Written by

Rebecca Ann Hughes

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