Immigrants’ SOS to Alarmphone: “It’s not a problem of ours”
April 11, 2019
On April 10th the Italian Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre received a phone call from Alarmphone saying that a boat full of immigrants was sinking in the Mediterranean Sea. The SOS was ignored by MRCC and immigrants were rescued and taken back to Libya.
“It’s not a problem of ours” they said. Shipwrecked people are not our business. WHAT?! AND WHOSE IS THIS BUSINESS?!
If a person is dying, wherever s/he is, if s/he is danger, whether s/he is black, white or yellow, it is a moral duty to save her/him. There are no excuses and nobody can back out and state that s/he is doing what our unbelievable and inhuman government says.
When there is a call for help like that from Alarmphone, people working for “MRCC” or for other acronyms, cannot work in the name of a ferociuos government – which is simply trying to gain votes – and state that it is not their responsibility. First, you help and save human beings, then you can think about responsibilities. Even if you are a citizen and not an institution, you cannot hide behind a so-called political line.
We know that our harbors are closed and we have understood the mechanism: Mr. Salvini shouts, people screams “Great!”, then Mr. Conte says something, Mrs. Merkel takes two or three immigrants and the problem is solved, “a tarallucci e vino”*. But this time the situation was different: immigrants were going to die and nobody was there to save them. There was only a little boat sinking and the last thing to do was to take it back to Libya.
*Translator’s Note: in Italian, the general meaning of the expression “a tarallucci e vino” is that a complicated situation or discussion is solved in a friendly and peaceful way. But sometimes, like in this case, the expression has a negative connotation, meaning that – especially when politicians are involved – at the end of an important and tough discussion, all people involved find a solution satisfying everybody’s interests, even if it is not the better one.