Out of Palermo
Vermont Public Radio did a piece on the installation of the third iteration of the goddess Ceres (aka Demeter) , goddess of agriculture, atop the golden dome of the capital building in Montpelier. Interesting Vermont/Sicily connection:
Demeter is the goddess of agriculture in Sicily. Her daughter, Persephone, was abducted beside a lake in central Sicily and spent the dry months underground in Hades.
Here is the link:
Last night about midnight a sailboat landed on the beach of Fontane Bianche outside Syracuse and disembarked 53 immigrants from Iraq. The sailboat, piloted by a man with red hair, had left Turkey a week before. 25 migrants, among them women and children, were found this morning at 5, but the boat captain and the other migrants have disappeared. Read More
"The deaths at sea of a mother and child have further exposed the flaws in a pact between Italy and Libya that has led to thousands of migrants being forcibly returned to the chaotic north African country.
Their bodies were found last week in the drifting wreckage of a boat off the Libyan coast by rescuers from the Spanish ship, Proactiva Open Arms. A woman from Cameroon was also found clinging to a piece of wood.
Sharing harrowing images of the bodies and the terrified survivor, the NGO accused the Libyan coastguard of abandoning the trio after they refused to be taken back to Libya, the main point of departure for migrants attempting the perilous crossing to Europe, with the rest of the intercepted group." Read More
Libya has rejected a EU plan to establish refugee and migrant processing centres in the country, adding that it would not be swayed by any financial inducements to change its decision.
The formal rejection by the Libyan prime minister, Fayez al-Sarraj, is a blow to Italy, which is regarded as being close to his Tripoli administration.
In June, Italy proposed reception and identification centres in Africa as a means of resolving divisions among European governments.
The impasse came as the EU said it was willing to work as a temporary crisis centre to oversee the distribution of refugees and migrants from ships landing in Europe from Libya. Italy has said it is not willing to open its ports and may even reject those rescued by the EU Sophia search and rescue mission, a position that has infuriated other EU states. Read More
by Pietro Bartolo in The Guardian.
"In the Mediterranean we’re witnessing a slaughter of innocents. I have seen the suffering, and I am ashamed of the Italian government’s response."
More than 200 migrants have drowned at sea in the Mediterranean in the past three days, taking the death toll for the year to more than 1,000 and prompting fears that human traffickers are taking greater risks because of a crackdown imposed by the Italian government and the Libyan coastguard.
It's 34,361 and rising: how the List tallies Europe's migrant bodycount
The UN refugee agency in Tripoli reported on Monday that 276 refugees and migrants were disembarked in the Libyan capital on Monday, including 16 survivors of a boat carrying 130 people, of whom 114 were still missing at sea. Further shipwrecks were found at the weekend. Read More
From today's La Repubblica:
A large boat with 90 people aboard flipped off the coast of Libya today. It is feared they all died. Most were Pakistanis. The year is young but has already seen 246 dead, almost all headed to Italy.