From Reuters: Belgium’s migration minister, Theo Francken, has said aid organisations are causing more deaths by saving migrants that try to cross the Mediterranean Sea from north Africa to Italy.
Theo Francken went on Twitter to criticize Doctors Without Borders (MSF) for operating ships near the Libyan coast that he says only encourage smugglers.
Smugglers regularly put migrants into overcrowded boats that are barely seaworthy and not meant to last the entire journey. MSF rescues people in Libyan waters and transfers them to Italy.
“By saving them you are indirectly causing only more death,” Francken said, adding, “They have to stay away. They are trafficking humans. It has nothing to do with refugees, this is illegal migration.”
MSF, which has reportedly saved some 24,000 migrants from drowning, said it regretted that a member of the Belgian government would criticize them for saving lives.