There are currently around 24.5 million refugees from different countries around the world. One of the major paradoxes of our time is the acceptance by economically developing countries to host hundreds of thousands of refugees, whilst much richer ones are more concerned with building barriers to keep those in need out.
The EU rhetoric heavily focuses on stopping smugglers from exploiting people and putting their lives at risk, instead of examining what induces them to seek the services of smugglers in the first place.
The crew of Sea Watch 3 urges the Maltese public to support their pledge to set them free. The only issue of the vessel and the only wrongdoing of the crew was saving lives—the lives that should be as valuable as ours, alas they seem not to be.
Had the Aquarius been a luxury yacht with extra communitarian multi-millionaires, the Maltese ports would not only be flung open but would be providing them with all the necessary paperwork to turn them into Maltese citizens.
Although they are uniformly referred to as “foreigners”, foreign nationals receive contrasting treatment, depending on their social status and nationality.