June 22, 2018 / 12:45 PM / 9 months ago

Spain offers to help Malta with latest migrant rescue ship

Migrants, part of a group intercepted aboard a dinghy off the coast in the Mediterranean Sea, stand after arriving on a rescue boat at the port of Malaga, Spain June 22, 2018. REUTERS/Jon Nazca

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain has been in contact with Malta to offer humanitarian help with a ship carrying more than 200 rescued immigrants which Italy asked the island state to take in, the government spokeswoman said on Friday.

Italy urged Malta to take the Dutch-flagged ship run by German charity Mission Lifeline a day after anti-immigrant Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said the vessel should take the migrants to the Netherlands.

“We have been in contact with Malta to offer support if humanitarian help is needed by the boat in the next few hours,” government spokeswoman Isabel Celaa said during a news conference following the weekly cabinet meeting.

Reporting by Robert Hetz; Writing by Paul Day; Editing by Isla Binnie

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