Reaction from MSF Humanitarian Affairs Advisor, Hassiba Hadj-Sahraoui
The decision by the EU to stop maritime deployments for Operation Sophia is irresponsible and reckless. For the vulnerable people trying to flee Libya their 'choices' are increasingly limited to being stuck in detention centres or dying at sea. Meanwhile, European countries continue to support the Libyan coastguard despite their clear lack of responsiveness to distress calls, and knowing that those people the Libyan coastguard do intercept will end up in horrible and inhumane detention centres. It shows again that the EU considers it acceptable to let people die at sea as a deterrence for migration, instead of providing adequate search and rescue capacity and agreeing on a disembarkation system which prioritises saving lives and gives people a chance to apply for asylum.