The applicants in this case are Syrian nationals. They were on a vessel in the Mediterranean Sea carrying more than 400 people. It shipwrecked, which caused the death of over half those on board. The Italian services for emergencies at sea were contacted. Several hours later, the emergency services replied to the request stating that the applicants were in the Maltese search and rescue zone, and provided them with a phone number. By this time the vessel had already capsized and sank. An Italian vessel only arrived after an urgent request from Malta emergency services was sent. The Committee found that Italy had failed to explain the delay in the response to the distress call. Additionally under Article 2 (3) (a) CCPR, the Committee found that Italy must conduct an effective and independent investigation in a prompt manner and if found necessary, prosecute those found responsible for the death of the applicants’ relatives.
Case of A.S. et al. – 3042/2017
Relevant Law Article 2 (3), 6 and 7 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Article 1, 5 (2) (b) of the Optional Protocol.
Found for Applicant