The Salvamento Maritimo (Maritime Rescue) managed to save 59 people last Thursday, among them 11 women, one pregnant, and a baby, after a boat was spotted 163 nautical miles (~301 km) south of Gran Canaria on Wednesday night.
Guardia Civil received reports of a patera (open boat) departing from Cape Bojador, on the northern coastline of Western Sahara. The Salvamento mobilised a Sasemar 103 aircraft and the Guardamar Talía rescue ship, after receiving the position of the patera, they diverted the MSC Barcelona to the area. The ship found the migrants and remained next to the boat until the arrival of the Guardamar Talía around 23:00 on Wednesday.
The Spanish State coast guard agency boat headed to Arguineguín, where they arrived at 09:30 after a long night, but with all the migrants in apparent good health.
There will be those, filled with resentment or even rage, who dislike rescues such as these.
However, understanding quite how arduous a journey these people undertake, often spending a year or more on the road, and then two or more years working without pay to try and gain the “opportunity” to escape the worst of their poverty, is the key to seeing why once they head out to open ocean, it is only right to try and save them from potentially suffering the worst ravages of the Atlantic.
Few make it here alone, some are rescued, who knows how many more simply float out in to the Atlantic, sink to the bottom or are simply never found?
All praise to the Salvamento Maritimo, and best of luck to those poor wretches who have risked everything to try and reach all we take for granted.