Italian Interior Minister Matteo Salvini allowed 10 of the 53 migrants stranded on the Sea-Watch 3 rescue ship to disembark on Saturday, but pressed ahead with plans to ban such boats from Italian territorial waters.
The 10 rescued migrants, including two pregnant women and three minors according to local media, were brought to the island of Lampedusa on medical grounds.
The German maritime rescue NGO rescued the 53 migrants off the coast of Libya on Wednesday but has been unable to disembark them after Italy refused them entry with Salvini ordering law enforcement on Thursday to prevent the boat from entering Italian waters.
Salvini also announced on Saturday that he had signed a decree banning “the entry, transit and berthing of Sea-Watch 3 in Italian territorial waters”, which now needs to be approved by parliament.
The government — composed of Salvini’s far-right League Party and the anti-establishment Five Star Movement — adopted another decree earlier this week that would see NGOs fined up to €50,000 if they bring rescued migrants to an Italian port instead of disembarking them in Libya.