Malta is proposing a €100 million EU aid package for Libya to deal with the ongoing migrant crisis. Foreign Minister Evarist Bartolo pitched his plan while failing to comment on migrants in need of rescue near Malta.
In a video message, Foreign Minister Evarist Bartolo said that the aid package would cover food, medicine, and medical equipment for Libya. He said that this challenge required a European sized response.
Bartolo said that the EU needed to agree on the financial aid immediately before a humanitarian catastrophe occurs. If the aid took long to materialise, thousands would be put in a desperate position said Bartolo.
The Foreign Minister stated that Malta was willing to offer its assistance to Libya for the country to be able to source medical equipment.
Bartolo accused NGOs urging migrants to cross borders illegally of being complicit in human tragedies.
According to Bartolo, improving conditions in Libya would be an “incentive” for migrants to remain in Libya instead of risking their life crossing the Mediterranean.
Unlike other conferences organised recently by various Ministries, journalists weren’t able to ask Bartolo questions via videoconferencing.
“In a few hours the sea is set to swell and if these people are not saved before the sea gets rough, they will die”. This was the crux of the heartrending email which Italian priest Don Mattia Ferrari sent to the Archbishop of Malta and the Bishop of Gozo. He begged for their intercession with the Maltese authorities to save the migrants facing almost certain death in the Maltese Search and Rescue zone.