Migrants attacked Coast Guard boat with Molotov cocktails

In the evening Aug 17 Tunisian Coast Guard patrol boat intercepted fishing vessel with illegal migrants off Sfax, Tunis, in their attempt to make way to Italy. When ordered to stop, migrants started to throw Molotov cocktails at CG boat. Accidentally or intentionally, migrants set their vessel on fire. 14 migrants of Congo, Ivory Coast and Tunisian nationalities were rescued and arrested. At least 4 migrants died.

This is all there is – imagine dozens or hundreds of migrants, picked up by merchant ship and going amok if the ship is refused entry and stuck at sea for indefinite period of time, or if the ship would attempt to disembark them not where they were heading (and paid money to traffickers). Imagine it’s a tanker in load, or dry cargo ship loaded with dangerous goods (any given container ship has containers with hazmat on board). All those who’re requesting merchant shipping to take part in “migrants rescue”, are inviting disaster to happen, sooner or later. Merchant ship must be officially banned from “migrants rescue” operations, as Law of the Sea has nothing to do with “migrants rescue”.





My name is Mikhail Voytenko, I’m Russian, professional merchant marine navigator, by education and former experience. I own and run Maritime Bulletin website for more than 10 years. I've been involved in solving a number of piracy hijack cases, including the hijack of ro-ro FAINA, loaded with tanks. It was me who made public, and unravel, freighter ARCTIC SEA mystery. I've been also closely involved in a number of maritime disaster, one of them being MSC FLAMINIA major fire.