Between 1 January and 31 August 2020, 2,162 persons were rescued at sea and disembarked in Malta. This is a 4% decrease compared to sea arrivals in the same period last year (2,246 arrivals between January and August 2019).
At the start of 2020, 989 people were rescued at sea and disembarked in Malta (January and February), with fewer arrivals in March (146) and April (66). In May, 425 persons rescued in four different SAR operations were held offshore on vessels chartered by the Maltese Government, while 72 rescued persons disembarked in Malta (families, children and medical evacuations). On 6 June, all persons held on offshore vessels were provided a port of safety in Malta. In July and August 2020, there were 463 sea arrivals.
The UNHCR team monitors disembarkations, while providing interpration support to the authorities and giving initial information on reception and asylum procedures to all new arrivals.