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Moas Malta

MOAS expands globally after awful support

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Charity will launch life-saving missions in Aegean Sea, South East Asia and Central Mediterranean. MOAS rescue boats in Aegean Sea named Aylan and Galip after two boys whose deaths shocked the world in September. M.Y. Phoenix arrives in Bangkok where it will undergo maintenance before deployment in South East Asia.

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Search and rescue charity Migrant Offshore Aid Station (MOAS) will launch a new rescue mission in the Aegean Sea where thousands of primarily Syrian refugees continue to cross every week from Turkey to Greece in unsafe vessels.

As the winter season approaches and casualty rates climb, MOAS will position the 51-meter Topaz Responder, a custom-made emergency response vessel in Greek territorial waters to act as a fast response and patrol search and vessel.

The Topaz Responder will host two high-speed rescue vessels on board capable of being launched rapidly or kept on patrol. The two rescue boats will be named Aylan and Galip, in honour of the Kurdi brothers whose deaths shocked the world in September.

MOAS (www.moas.eu) is also establishing a new operation in South East Asia as well as renewing its mission in the central Mediterranean Sea, where the NGO saved almost 12,000 lives since August 2014.

The announcement was made just before the Valletta Summit where EU and African leaders are meeting to discuss migration.

“We are expanding thanks to the overwhelming support we have received from all over the world in the past months. We now plan to have a presence in all three major migrant crossing routes. Each life we save is a testament to everybody who has donated to turn MOAS into the global NGO it is today,” said Christopher Catrambone, who founded MOAS together with his wife Regina Catrambone.

“All the MOAS missions will be distinct due to the different realities in each area of operation. The common thread is that each mission will seek to prevent more deaths at sea. We will work collaboratively with all stakeholders in each region as we have done successfully in the Mediterranean Sea since 2014,” said Martin Xuereb, director of MOAS.

More than 500 people, including many children, are estimated to have drowned already this year trying to reach the Greek shores. Officials leading rescue efforts on the Greek island of Lesbos have recently warned the death toll in the eastern Aegean Sea is likely to rise unless urgent action is taken.

Meanwhile, in South East Asia, the onset of the sailing season is expected to push thousands of people out to sea.

MOAS, which was launched in 2014, began as a small NGO with one vessel, M.Y. Phoenix, which has so far already saved 11,685 people from perilous conditions in the Central Mediterranean.

M.Y. Phoenix will arrive in Bangkok tomorrow where it will undergo repairs and maintenance after which it will be ready for operations by 2016.

For more information or to schedule an interview, please call MOAS Press Officer Christian Peregin on +356 79241187

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iqMLYiCLbe8

Photos: http://www.moas.eu/press-images/
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MOAS: new mission in South-Est Asia

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Maltese NGO is preparing to reach the Bay of Bengal, where Rohingyas are escaping from Myanmar. “Our job in the Mediterranean is not over but we now feel it is our responsibility over the winter months to use the M.Y. Phoenix in another part of the world facing an equally challenging but severely underreported crisis “, said MOAS founder Christopher Catrambone.

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Not only Europe has involved in refugees issue. Another of the main worldwide migrant route is in South-Est Asia and concerning the Rohingyas. Since 2012, they’re persecuted from Myanmar government because the majority is Muslim and they are even considered foreigners. The other minority is composed by Bangladeshis, who live in poverty. During 2014 and 2015, more of them has tried to reach Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia but, after a temporary reception, they has been repulsed.

This geopolitical context, equivalent to Mediterranean and Europe backgrounds, has encouraged MOAS to return today from Mediterranean mission of Summer 2015 and to expand its mission to South-Est Asia because, as reported by UNHCR, more than 1,100 Bangladeshis and Rohingyas drowned between January 2014 and June 2015 and the number of crossings is expected to increase this year.

According to MOAS, Maltese NGO “has saved more than 11,500 men, women and children from the Mediterranean Sea. The M.Y. Phoenix will be returning to its base in Malta today to prepare for a month-long journey to the Bay of Bengal. ”

“MOAS has helped establish a robust search and rescue presence in the Mediterranean Sea, which today sees a number of publicly and privately funded vessels working to stop preventable deaths,” said MOAS founder Christopher Catrambone.

“Our job in the Mediterranean is not over but we now feel it is our responsibility over the winter months to use the M.Y. Phoenix in another part of the world facing an equally challenging but severely underreported crisis. Through this action, MOAS will be shedding light on another aspect of this pressing global phenomenon in an area where there is no known NGO rescue presence at sea. Once the monsoon rains subside, tens of thousands of Rohingya and others are expected to resume their dangerous sea crossings,” he added.
Giacomo Pratali

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MOAS raises €1 million in two days in ‘tidal wave of humanity’

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With this money drive, Maltese Ngo could follow to help migrants who will arrive in the next months. Thanks to Phoenix vessel and other instruments, this organization has been helpful to Italian
authorities.

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Search and rescue charity MOAS (Migrant Offshore Aid Station) has received more than €1 million in donations from all over the world in the past 48 hours.

Since heartbreaking photos were published showing Syrian toddler Aylan Kurdi washed ashore a Turkish beach, MOAS has been among many NGOs receiving a tidal wave of support.

Donations have poured in every few seconds from all over the world including the US, UK, Turkey, Germany and Brazil.

Meanwhile, a crowdfunding campaign has been launched on Indiegogo to help buy at least one more boat for MOAS. Entitled #PeoplesArmada, the campaign is seeking to raise an additional $3 million and can be found here: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/people-s-armada#/story

Since the launch of operations in August 2014, MOAS has saved over 11,000 lives from sinking boats in the Mediterranean Sea.

“We are experiencing a tidal wave of humanity after years of global indifference. One photo has changed people’s hearts and minds the world over. We are all now realising this is a humanitarian crisis of epic proportions and we need all hands on deck. People are donating to charities like ours because they want to do something concrete to help. It is time world leaders get together to do the same,” said MOAS director Martin Xuereb.

“These donations will have big implications on our small but very effective organisation. We may be able to expand our mission’s reach to other parts of the Mediterranean and beyond. Our long-term vision is to enhance our capabilities to mitigate loss of life all year round. At the moment, our current levels of funding limit us to one vessel operating for six months every year – and we have already saved so many lives. Imagine what we can do with significantly more funding,” he added.

The operational costs of MOAS are upwards of €500,000 each month.

“MOAS strives to draw a very short line between funds received and lives saved. In fact, well over 90% of the funds we receive are spent directly on saving lives. To this end, we keep our administration costs down to a bare minimum. We will make sure all funds raised are pumped into a direct effort to save refugees from certain death,” added Mr Xuereb, Malta’s former Chief of Defence.

“Unfortunately we were not there to be able to save young Aylan Kurdi but we will keep working tirelessly to keep his memory alive by making sure such tragedies do not repeat themselves,” he said.

For more information about what MOAS has achieved in the past 12 months, visit: http://www.moas.eu/mitigating-death-and-inspiring-action-at-the-worlds-deadliest-border-moas-saves-10000-lives-during-its-first-year/

Giacomo Pratali

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