France, Portugal and Spain struck a deal on Tuesday to take in migrants from the Mediterranean rescue ship ‘Aquarius,’ which is sailing off the coast of Malta, the Portuguese Interior Ministry said.
The Italian government earlier refused to let the vessel dock. Portugal said it had agreed to take 10 of the 58 migrants on board as part of a “response of solidarity to the flow of migrants seeking to reach Europe across the Mediterranean.”
Malta said migrants would be transferred to a patrol boat in international waters and taken to the island, which will then send them to four other EU states. It was not immediately clear how many migrants France and Spain had agreed to take in, or who the fourth EU country was, Reuters said.
On Tuesday morning, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said his country was not ready to let the ‘Aquarius’ dock in Marseille.