The Libyan Coast Guard Stops the Migrants, and the EU Picks up the Tab

The following report from Spiegel TV follows the actions of a patrol boat for the Libyan Coast Guard as it interdicts migrants in its territorial waters and deals with NGO ships that are trying to “rescue” the “refugees”.

According to the report, the EU is paying Libya to stop the migrants. But the European policy seems quite incoherent, since the EU is also encouraging the migrants to come, and protecting the NGOs that ferry them to Italian ports. Could this be a case of different factions within the EU working against each other?

Many thanks to Ava Lon for the translation, and to Vlad Tepes for the subtitling:

Video transcript:

00:05   From North Africa people are coming to the supposed paradise: Europe.
00:10   Since Saturday 10,000 refugees have been rescued from Sicily alone.
00:15   Never before was the pressure as strong as today. For that reason Libya also became crucial
00:19   for Europe, because it’s doing a large part of the work: on land and on sea.
00:25   On occasion the captain of a Libyan ship of the Coast Guard
00:30   has to grab his gun— as you’ll see right away. The report: our colleges from Spiegel TV will show
00:35   how the Mediterranean Sea became the stage for a fight between private aid groups
00:38   and Libyan guards. Summer is coming: time for dying.
00:45   The Libyan capital Tripoli: shortly before sunrise.
00:50   Captain Abdul Bari is steering his boat Al-Kifah towards the German fight,
00:55   towards the north in the Mediterranean Sea. He and his crew are hunting for
01:00   criminal gangs who are smuggling drugs, gas and above all, people.
01:11   This is the high season for the smugglers. The sea is quiet.
01:16   The smugglers are using fast inflatable boats;
01:21   the business is at the peak of its season.
01:26   The Al-Kifah: the only deep-sea Coast Guard vessel
01:31   navigates at sea off the city of Sabrata.
01:36   Sabrata: a town in the hands of organized crime. Many smugglers’ boats
01:41   depart from here. Usually the refugees try to leave the 12-mile zone [of Libyan territorial waters]
01:46   to reach international waters in order to send a distress call from there.
01:51   Because there the NGOs are waiting and try to save them.
01:56   In the morning the Libyan Coast Guard notices on the horizon
02:01   one such “aid boat” from the German NGO Sea Watch.
02:06   I think the presence of those boats in those waters
02:11   makes the problem worse: because it makes the smugglers’ work easier.
02:16   Before the boats had to go 160 miles up to Lampedusa
02:21   Now it’s only 12 miles. It takes them only 12 hours: a “taxi service” for the refugees.
02:27   Hello, Sea Watch, I am a journalist
02:32   from Spiegel TV. I would like to talk to you, if possible.
02:37   We just held an interview with the captain. He made some critical comments, and in the meantime
02:42   he thinks it’s a taxi service. The more people are saved, the more get in. —Yes, this is true;
02:47   those accusations also come from the European side,
02:52   but those people were also here before, and for this reason this is nonsense.
02:57   We continue sailing. Then from the headquarters in Tripoli an order arrives.
03:02   A refugees boat sent a distress call.
03:07   The Coast Guard sets a course there, but the German “helper boat” is also there.
03:12   They are trying to reach the refugee boat before us.
03:17   We narrowly avoided a deep-sea collision.
03:22   Neither of the two captains changes his course.
03:27   Both obviously see themselves as right.
03:38   It’s not an easy question whose fault the situation is.
03:43   In principle, the Germans have priority. On the sea there’s also priority from the right.
03:48   Anyway, the Libyans are officially on a rescue mission. —I’d like to discuss unloading on the coast.
03:53   —How do you see the mission? —We assess the mission as very, very dangerous.
03:58   First, because the captain has no idea what he is doing.
04:03   we crossed a boat, and couldn’t dodge because we just did the crane operation,
04:08   and to navigate this close at sea is absolutely dangerous and simply idiotic
04:13   You just cannot navigate this close on the windy sea! He put his crew into huge danger,
04:18   you, his boat, my crew, my boat; we are all just happy
04:23   that we are still alive. Shortly afterwards we reach the refugees’ boat.
04:28   Stop the engine.
04:33   But the man who
04:38   operates the engine of the refugees’ boat doesn’t stop. Perhaps he wants to
04:43   arrive at the Sea Watch, which is close by. The captain pulls a gun.
04:49   Stop the engine.
04:54   The refugees have to go back to the Libyan mainland. For deterrence. And so
04:59   Captain Abdul Bari becomes Europe’s man in the African port.
05:04   The EU supports the maintenance of the Coast Guard with
05:09   €200 million. Patrol boats are being delivered and men are being trained.
05:14   Almost 500 people are traveling on this boat.
05:19   From every refugee the smuggle mafia collects — just for the crossing —
05:24   €2000. A profit of one million Euros.
05:29   The refugees don’t suspect yet where they will be brought, until one of them
05:34   asks the journalists’ team . —Where are we going?
05:39   You are going back to Tripoli. — To Libya? Why?
05:44   Why? —This is the Libyan Coast Guard.
05:55   Also dreams, hopes and wishes are shattered for the twenty women.
06:05   You are going to Tripoli. You will be safe.
06:10   All the people here are the same as you. — After all I have paid!
06:20   The refugees are being brought back
06:25   to a deeply divided country. Here they are considered illegal immigrants,
06:30   and end up in one of 32 camps. For in Libya now there are
06:35   thousands of people interned, waiting to be deported to their home countries.
06:40   We are diving 90 km west from Tripoli to Tahuna,
06:45   an important point on the smuggling route through the Sahara. We are accompanying a convoy
06:50   of the Libyan Police from the Department of Illegal Immigration.
06:55   The smugglers are bringing people from one point to another under the protection of darkness.
07:00   Those police officers are hoping — just like the coast guard — for more money. Since they are
07:06   here as something like the outposts of the EU.
07:11   They are traveling in a small transport with 40 men.
07:16   Police! Police! Two ran away!
07:21   Let’s just take care of these here!
07:26   The truck was on its way to the Mediterranean coast. The driver was arrested right away.
07:31   The 40 men are originally from Eritrea.
07:36   What happens if you have to go back to Eritrea?
07:41   No. Don’t say it. If I cannot stay here,
07:46   I will commit suicide.
07:51   Libya. A gigantic turntable for the refugees. Everywhere money is lacking.
07:56   There are many reports about mistreated refugees and catastrophic
07:59   humanitarian conditions In Libya, which is mostly lawless, where everything is possible.
08:07   Tripoli airport
08:12   Every week planes take off here to bring Africans back in their home countries.
08:17   Today it 250 Nigerians, who have to go back to Lagos.
08:27   I promise you I’ll come to Germany. —I’ll come to Germany — I promise!
08:32   On the plane
08:37   Back on the Mediterranean Sea
08:42   the women don’t want to go back to Libya. They say back there
08:47   there is a boat for a NGO that would bring them to a safe country.
08:52   In Libya there is war.
08:57   The other boat is in Libyan waters illegally, and it has no right to pick up people from here.
09:02   Please, sit down. Sit down.
09:07   Sit, down please, now. —We suffered so much
09:13   in Syria, why are you bringing us back to Libya?
09:18   Libya wants to show itself as a trustworthy gatekeeper for Europe.
09:23   The country is hoping in this way to find further millions financially.
09:28   After all, this is the deal: the EU provides money,
09:33   and Libya is taking care of the rough work in situ.

6 thoughts on “The Libyan Coast Guard Stops the Migrants, and the EU Picks up the Tab

  1. Europe should be thankful for Hillary Clinton, Barry O’fraud
    & NATO for the destruction of Gaddafi’s Libya. It is so much
    better now .. eh ?? Whatever blood was shed then is but a drop
    compared to what is coming ..

  2. I feel sorry for these particular migrants; Eritrea has one of the nastiest governments on the planet, and many young men are drafted into the military indefinitely. Which is not to say that they should be Europe’s problem.

    • Well. I don’t. What they tried to do was criminal, and they knew it. They gambled and lost, tough. My heart goes out to the Libyans, having to fend off arrogant pieces of excrement like the Sea Watch crew who are luring people to their deaths and compromising Libyan security. I’d like to see one of these European “rescue boats” sunk, with crew saved but severely chastened. If the EU or Germany had any interest in stopping the flow they would act against these European people smugglers. But they choose not to.

  3. “Could this be a case of different factions within the EU working against each other?”

    No. It’s just cowardice. Let the lybians do the dirty work, while the europeans receive the “refugees” and look good to the left wing media.

  4. Is the one-ship Libyan navy going to create a refugee shortage in Europe?

    The EU bureaucrats are sitting on top of literally oceans of other people’s money. They can fund anything and everything, except German pensioners, of course. Why are the open-border enthusiasts funding refugee interception? Who knows? Bureaucrats don’t like change, and perhaps they’re spooked by the velocity of deterioration. So, they pay for a small set of brakes.

    Perhaps the bureaucrats simply want to establish some deniability, in case things go south. “I wasn’t responsible for the refugees; my agency paid to intercept them.” All things are possible with other people’s money, including funding completely opposite and contradictory agencies.

    I suppose there will never be accountability for the millions of people whose lives were destroyed and hundreds of thousands killed by Hillary’s totally insane assassination of Libyan dictator Gaddafi, who was cooperating completely with Western objectives. The bigger the crime, the bigger the payoff, for Democrats at least. True, Hillary was cheated of a Presidency rightfully hers by the antiquated provisions of the electoral college, but her Libyan, Ukrainian and Afghani adventures won only praise from Democrats and establishment Republicans. These ingrates stopped contributing the the Clinton Foundation, though, once it became apparent she was not going to be President. How much sharper than a serpent’s tooth is an ungrateful former-donor?

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