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Code of Conduct for INGOs Involved in SAR Operations in the Mediterranean

Statewatch has leaked a version of the code of contact the European Commission has demanded that INGOs involved in SAR activities in the Central Mediterranean sign with Italy.

It starts with paying lip service to life and respect to human rights. Then it predicts 11 operation obligations for signatories. Some of them will pause serious obstacles to organisations to continue operating given they will need to compromise independence, surrender confidential info and possibly compromise the status of people they have rescued.

most important ones appear to be..

obligation to receive onboard police officers that will conduct preliminary inquiries and investigations,
obligation to declare sources of financing,
obligation to have a certificate attesting technical suitability for rescuing activities,
obligation to transmit all information of info-investigative interest to the Italian port authorities, and deliver on their own initiative or upon request any object that could constitute proof of evidence of an illegal act

“Failure to sign this Code of Conduct or failure to comply with its obligations may result in the refusal by the Italian State to authorize the access to national ports, subject to compliance with the existing international conventions.”

Read draft document here

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