Frontex is an organisation somewhat underfunded to date to prevent loss of life involved in persons setting out to sea in unsuitable boats from the North African coast, possibly Libya. A small percentage of the human cargo is Libyan, but mostly these needy persons come from perhaps the sub-sahara, or Eritrea.and other places. Obviously the more the weather
settles, the more attempt the perilous voyage in small boats. Lampedusa is an ideal landing point as the Italians govern this isle and have resources to process the refugees. Malta
is really small and a new entrant to the EU.
They also struggle to come to terms with the small inward investment by Europe
in North african nations.No work and starvation makes persons want to attempt to enter Europe.Many making this awful voyage have previously worked in London and elsewhere in Europe's cities and have been deported.They have such a sense of loss that they feel any risk is worth the chance of regaining Europe.The boat operators can leave their passengers on the tuna cages which are towed about slowly around these areas.I have heard a figure of 15,000 expected influx this season.
Most leisure sailors in small yachts would be faced with an extreme dilemma coming upon such stranded souls.I sincerely hope that Frontex is sufficiently funded this season to be able to rescue
and help those who find themselves clinging to fish
cages in the dark.
Thus strategically placed in the Mediterranean
, as always, lie, Lampudusa and Malta, on which more bombs were dropped than were dropped on London in WW11.A wonderful people industrious and cheerful, the burden of Europe's non-intervention by way of inward investment in North Africa
is borne completely unfairly by a small Republic, which size wise would probably fit into an Irish lough Derg.Other small islands exist, such a Pantellaria.No harbour that I know of, there are air connection to this idyllic Italian isle, off the track of this form of trade
It is not to be supposed that leisure sailing in the area is discouraged, quite the opposite, the Rolex middle sea race
is a major event in the area, and what a tough race
was the last one.
Hopefully you will cruise
uneventfully and enjoyably and enjoy Malta and all its history
, the cuisine, and great personality. Perhaps then onwards to Tunisia
the hospitality of Monastir and Port El Kantaoui marinas
and their excellently organised hinterlands.