The Netherlands will take in 20 of the 230 people stranded on the rescue ship Lifeline which has now docked in Malta after spending six days at sea.
The decision has been made on humanitarian grounds, the justice ministry said. France, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Belgium and Portugal have also agreed to give refugee to some of the boat’s passengers in a move which allowed the ship to dock.
The Lifeline picked up its passengers on Thursday when they were attempting to cross the Mediterranean sea from Libya, where some claim to have been escaping from torture.
Lifeline spokesman Axel Steier told the Times of Malta, the migrants included 17 women and five children, including an unattended two-year-old.
The German charity Mission Lifeline which runs the ship has come under fire from EU leaders who say it contravened international law by rescuing the migrants when the Libyan coastguard was already intervening.
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