German far right wants rescue ships impounded
THESSALONIKI, Greece — The far-right Alternative for German party is calling for private ships rescuing migrants in the Mediterranean Sea to be impounded.
Deputy party leader Georg Pazderski on Wednesday accused groups such as the one that operates the German vessel Lifeline of being “accomplices” to people smugglers operating in the Mediterranean.
Pazderski said his party, known as AfD, wants the sea route “closed” to migrants and any people picked up en route to be “taken back to Africa immediately.”
AfD came third in last year’s German election, buoyed by a wave of anti-migrant sentiment following the arrival of more than a million asylum-seekers since 2015.
Most of the migrants fled wars in Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, but a sizeable number were also trying to escape poverty in Africa.
(The Associated Press)