Rescue Vessel Launches On Line Appeal for Funds

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The search and rescue charitable foundation Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) has launched an urgent appeal for funds following this week’s tragedy in Lampedusa which saw hundreds of migrants drown and others dying of hypothermia after being rescued.

MOAS is a purpose-built search and rescue operation created with private funds to assist naval, commercial and private mariners in rescue at sea and successfully assisted 3,000 migrants during a 60-day mission in the summer of 2014.

The charity patrols the seas using the 40-metre expedition vessel Phoenix.

It carries two Remote Piloted Aircraft, two RIBs and is crewed by a team of rescuers and paramedics, MOAS is able to professionally locate, monitor, and assist vessels in distress at any time and in coordination with the maritime, naval and private vessels via the Rome Rescue Coordination Centre.

According to reports, three rubber dinghies crammed beyond capacity by smugglers with hundreds of migrants left Libya on the weekend. The first responder was a tiny tug boat which waited some two hours for naval help from Operation Triton, by which time many were already dead or dying. After around 100 people were rescued, at least 29 died from hypothermia on their way back to Lampedusa.