Yesterday a staggering 6,500 people were rescued in the southern Mediterranean. They may have been fleeing from conflict, persecution, conscription or extreme poverty. No one risks taking this perilously dangerous and frightening journey unless they are fleeing from something even worse.
The boats these people were travelling on were in a variety of states of disrepair – from old wooden fishing vessels to inflatable dinghies. The vast majority were dangerously overcrowded and filled with women and children.