Search and rescue vlog: A 12-hour operation

"The boat eventually ran out of fuel at the exact point between the Maltese and Italian waters. The likelihood of that happening is very, very slim, but that's exactly what happened."

On 1 August 2018, Aquarius, a search and rescue ship operated by Médecins Sans Frontières and SOS MEDITERANEE, set sail for international waters off the coast of Libya to rescue people in distress at sea.

With few humanitarian ships in the region, and in the absence of dedicated search and rescue operations by European states, men, women and children are risking their lives to escape from violence and exploitation in Libya.

Irish nurse Aoife Ní Mhurchú is MSF’s Vulnerable Persons Focal Point on board the ship, tasked with identifying, documenting and referring people who are defined as vulnerable -  such as unaccompanied minors, victims of torture, survivors of sexual violence, disabled people, people with psychiatric illness, or people suspected of being trafficked.

Aoife recorded the crew’s work as Aquarius searched for boats in distress.