Italian judge says German captain acted to protect human life – ruling
4 July, 2019, 4:31 am
AGRIGENTO, Italy (Reuters) – An Italian judge ruled on Tuesday that the German captain of a rescue charity ship had not broken the law when she forced a naval blockade at the weekend, saying she had been carrying out her duty to protect human life.
Carola Rackete, a 31-year-old German national, disobeyed Italian military orders and entered the port of Lampedusa on Saturday to bring some 41 African migrants to land in the Dutch-flagged Sea-Watch boat.
She was immediately detained and placed under house arrest, but in a blow for Italy’s hardline Interior Minister, Matteo Salvini, Judge Alessandra Vella ruled that Rackete had been carrying out her duty and had not committed any act of violence.