Immediate – 13 June 2016
“I have no worry about crossing the sea, because as soon as I take decision to leave my family for an unknown world, there is no more worry. I will either succeed or die. That is it.”
Following extensive field research in the Sahel, Africa, Human Rights at Sea releases its latest international publication exposing the real-life stories behind the reasoning why African migrants leave their home and risk all to travel north through the Sahel and Sahara to attempt the Mediterranean crossing, often with fatal consequences.
The research is part of the charity’s ongoing investigations and objective narrative explaining why people migrate from Africa. This often results in the loss of their lives while attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea, or otherwise they are rescued by Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), military, coast guard or commercial vessels during such perilous attempts. Some migrants are increasingly being returned to States where they are abused and persecuted often against the international law protection of non-refoulement. Other migrants are reported by NGOs, or families, as having simple gone missing.
Free to download from the Human Rights at Sea website, the publication aims to provide those researching and teaching the subject matter with further insight and evidence collated from first-hand witness testimonies. For those working in the maritime environment it provides accurate insight into the background of the very people that seafarers and fishers may come in contact with during humanitarian rescues at sea.
The publication has been drafted to complement the likes of the Marlins maritime Humanitarian Response e-learning course, the International Maritime Organisation (IMO), UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) Rescue at Sea publication, the ICS Large Scale Rescue Operations at Sea publication, the Human Rights at Sea Volunteer Maritime Rescuers: Awareness of Criminalisation and Deprivation of Liberty at Sea publications. The release also coincides with the charity’s participation with the Jean Monet Centre for Excellence Summer School on the issue of migrants in the Mediterranean underway this week in Naples, Italy.
Human Rights at Sea CEO, David Hammond, commented: “Our latest charitable publication supporting greater human rights awareness for the maritime community, is the result of extensive field work to complement and expand upon other key publications concerning the issue of migrants in the maritime environment. It goes to develop State, corporate and civil society awareness, education and the realization that for every story there is a human behind it.”
Human Rights at Sea is an independent maritime human rights charity registered in England and Wales established for the benefit of the international community for matters concerning explicit engagement with human rights issues in the maritime environment. Its Mission is to explicitly raise awareness, implementation and accountability of human rights provisions throughout the maritime environment, especially where they are currently absent, ignored or being abused.
The migrant issue will be covered in detail at the forthcoming inaugural International Maritime Human Rights Conference (IMHR 2016) in London at the Royal College of Surgeons on 14 September 2016. Details for the programme, speakers and registration can be found at www.mar-rights.com. The conference is to be opened by the UK Minister of Shipping, as Minister of State at the Department for Transport, Robert Goodwill MP.
For further information
David Hammond, CEO, Human Rights at Sea, Langstone Technology Park, Langstone Road, Havant, PO9 1SA, UK