Tensions rose on a rescue ship stranded off southern Italy on Tuesday, as 10 of the migrants aboard jumped into the sea and tried to swim ashore, according to the Spanish charity that operates the vessel.
The ship Open Arms, at sea for 19 days with almost 100 migrants onboard, has been waiting just off the port of Lampedusa, asking permission to bring the mostly African migrants ashore, despite an Italian ban on private rescue ships docking.
The migrants, wearing life jackets, were pulled out of the water by the Italian coast guard.
Dozens of other migrants have been taken ashore since the ship entered Italian waters because they were said to be minors or ill. The remaining migrants still sleep jammed together on deck and share two toilets. Open Arms says some are suicidal.
Italy says it has borne too much responsibility for handling African migration to Europe. Its interior minister says the charity-run ships have become “taxis” for people smugglers.