+++Despite thunderstorm: 678 people rescued, 1 birth within less than 24 hrs+++

SOS MEDITERRANEE has rescued 678 refugees within less than 24 hours. Despite bad weather conditions all rescued individuals were brought onto the AQUARIUS safely. Including a 9-month pregnant woman who gave birth to a healthy little boy couple of hours later. It is already the third time the AQUARIUS crew witnesses the onboard birth of a baby. A midwife is currently taking care of the mother and her child.

Last weekend SOS MEDITERRANEE saved 353 refugees and brought them to Sicily where they were welcomed by local authorities. Shortly after the AQUARIUS has returned to the Search and Rescue (SAR) zone, where the crew received the first distress call followed by three more. A total of 678 people were retrieved from two rubber dinghies and two wooden boats. Top-nationalities are amongst others Senegal, Somalia and Eritrea, followed by Bangladesh, Syria and Morocco.

Weather conditions are worsening in the Central Mediterranean. Today, the AQUARIUS crew was even faced with a thunderstorm during one of the rescue operation. Moreover, the SAR team received two distress calls at the same time and hat to assist those two boats simultaneously.