Press release | Date: 2018-06-27 | Ministry of Foreign Affairs
The migrant rescue ship Lifeline has docked in Malta after a group of European countries, including Norway, agreed to assist Malta and offer to resettle a number of the more than 200 migrants on board.
At the request of Malta, the Norwegian Government has decided to offer to resettle 15 individuals. This offer is a response to this particular situation and based on humanitarian considerations. It is an ad hoc solution to address an acute situation. The 15 refugees will be resettled as part of Norway’s annual quota for resettlement of refugees, as stipulated in the budget.
‘Norway has decided to assist Malta because of the difficult humanitarian situation, and to show solidarity with our European partners. Migration challenges need to be met at the European level, and we are now contributing to a joint European solution to an acute situation’ said Minister of Foreign Affairs Ine Eriksen Søreide.
It is envisaged that the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) will consider the need for protection of those on board, and determine their refugee status, while the ship is docked in Malta.
Lifeline was blocked from docking at European ports after picking up migrants and refugees in the Mediterranean last Thursday. This situation has now been resolved with Malta’s offer to allow the ship to dock.