Malta to disembark 356 migrants en route to six EU countries

MADRID (AP) — Malta said it will disembark 356 migrants aboard a humanitarian ship in the central Mediterranean Sea after six European countries agreed to accept all of them.

In a series of tweets yesterday, Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said the migrants will be transferred from the Ocean Viking to vessels of the country’s armed forces before taking them on shore.

The Norwegian-flagged rescue ship has been sailing between the island of Linosa and Malta.

Requests for a safe port were previously denied by Malta and ignored by Italy, according to Doctors Without Borders and SOS Mediterranee, the two charities running the ship.

The 356 will be distributed to France, Germany, Ireland, Luxembourg, Portugal and Romania.