A vessel transporting 72 African women, children migrants and political refugees from Tripoli to Italy ran into trouble on route with 61 on-board dying of thirst or hunger, despite numerous SOS calls having been sent which were ignored by the NATO.
Other European military units also ignored the emergency distress call from the boat in late March. One survivor said, "Every morning we would wake & find more bodies, which we would leave for 24 hours and then thrown overboard. By the final days, we didn´t know ourselves ... everyone was either praying, or dying."
International maritime law states all vessels at sea should respond to SOS calls. The UN´s refugee agency has called for stricter co-operation among commercial and military vessels in the area to respond to all calls for help.