Spain: Nigerian stowaways found on ship’s rudder seek asylum

Nov 29, 2022, 2:19 PM | Updated: Nov 30, 2022, 5:28 am
In this photo released by Spain's Maritime Safety and Rescue Society on Tuesday Nov. 29, 2022, thre...

In this photo released by Spain's Maritime Safety and Rescue Society on Tuesday Nov. 29, 2022, three men are photographed on an oil tanker anchored in the port of the Canary Islands, Spain. Spain’s Maritime Rescue Service says it has rescued three stowaways traveling on a ship’s rudder in the Canary Islands after the vessel sailed there from Nigeria. The men were found on the Alithini II oil tanker at the Las Palmas port. (Salvamento Maritimo via AP)

(Salvamento Maritimo via AP)

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — The three Nigerian stowaways found on an oil tanker’s rudder after an 11-day ocean voyage from Lagos, Nigeria to Las Palmas in the Canary Islands are seeking asylum in Spain, a spokesperson for the Spanish government delegation in the Canaries said Wednesday.

The three men were picked up Monday by Spain’s Maritime Rescue Service from the rudder of the Alithini II ship and transferred to two hospitals on the island of Gran Canaria with symptoms of dehydration and hypothermia. One of them remained hospitalized while the other two had been released, Spanish authorities said.

According to Spanish law, unless the stowaways seek asylum, or are minors, the ship owner or agent is responsible for returning them to their point of departure – in this case, Lagos. Given that they are now seeking asylum, the ship is free to leave port again.

The asylum seekers’ identities and their motives for leaving Nigeria and hiding on the ship’s rudder haven’t been made public.

Earlier Wednesday, the human rights organization Walking Borders issued a statement demanding the Spanish government halt their potential return to Nigeria and calling for their cases to be assessed individually. The statement was issued following reports by Spanish authorities that two of the men were returned to the vessel for a potential return.

The non-governmental organization advocated that they be placed into the government’s humanitarian program for migrants so they could recover from their voyage and possibly seek asylum.

Spain’s Maritime Rescue Service shared a poignant photo that went viral this week showing the three men sitting precariously on top of the rudder with their feet only a few centimeters (inches) from the water’s surface under the ship’s massive hull.

According to the MarineTraffic tracking website, the Malta-flagged vessel left Lagos, Nigeria on Nov. 17 and arrived in Las Palmas on Monday. The distance between the ports is roughly 4,600 kilometers (2,800 miles).

___

Follow AP’s coverage of global migration at https://apnews.com/hub/migration

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

FILE - Bryan Kohberger, who is accused of killing four University of Idaho students in Nov. 2022, a...
Associated Press

News groups ask Idaho Supreme Court to reject University slayer gag order

Thirty news organizations have asked the Idaho Supreme Court to overturn a gag order in a case against a man accused of stabbing four students to death.
14 hours ago
Nathan Chasing Horse stands in court. Monday, Feb. 6, 2023, in North Las Vegas, Nev. Nathan Chasing...
Associated Press

‘Dances With Wolves’ actor charged in 2018 rape in PNW

Canadian police confirmed Tuesday they are pursuing a criminal case against a former "Dances With Wolves" actor who was arrested last week and charged in Nevada with sexually abusing and trafficking Indigenous women and girls.
14 hours ago
Associated Press

Oregon governor: Agency leaders used jobs for personal gain

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Oregon Gov. Tina Kotek on Wednesday asked the board of commissioners of the state’s marijuana and alcohol regulating authority to remove its executive director and other leaders, alleging they “abused their position for personal gain.” “This behavior is wholly unacceptable. I will not tolerate wrongful violations of our government ethics laws,” […]
2 days ago
FILE - North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein speaks in front of the Supreme Court in Washingto...
Associated Press

Appeals court backs North Carolina AG Stein on libel law

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A federal appeals court sided again with North Carolina’s attorney general on Wednesday, saying a 1931 libel law is most likely unconstitutional. Josh Stein has sought to block a fellow Democrat from using the law to prosecute him over a 2020 campaign commercial. In a unanimous result, the three-judge panel of […]
2 days ago
FILE - A cursor moves over Google's search engine page on Aug. 28, 2018, in Portland, Ore. The comp...
Associated Press

Investors’ query: Can Google answer Microsoft’s AI threat?

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Google, a company built on finding quick answers to people’s questions, suddenly finds itself grappling for a response to a potential threat to its internet empire — a form of artificial intelligence that long-time rival Microsoft is now deploying to attack its dominant search engine. Microsoft’s assault combined with concerns about […]
2 days ago
Associated Press

Chipotle, Capri fall; New Relic, CVS Health rise

NEW YORK (AP) — Stocks that traded heavily or had substantial price changes Wednesday: Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc., down $85.45 to $1,637.41. The Mexican food chain’s fourth-quarter profit and revenue fell short of Wall Street forecasts. Fortinet Inc., up $5.86 to $59.64. The network security company gave investors an encouraging financial forecast. Capri Holdings Ltd., […]
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Spain: Nigerian stowaways found on ship’s rudder seek asylum