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Sunday, August 26, 2018, 17:28
10 days after rescue, Italy lets all migrants leave ship
By Associated Press
Sunday, August 26, 2018, 17:28 By Associated Press

Migrants aboard the Italian Coast Guard ship Diciotti talk as they await decisions in the port of Catania, Italy, Aug 24 2018. (ORIETTA SCARDINO / ANSA VIA AP)

ROME — Ten days after they were rescued in the Mediterranean Sea, Italy has allowed all the migrants stuck on an Italian coast guard ship to disembark.

Italy's populist govt had not let them leave the ship earlier

Early Sunday, 137 migrants left the Diciotti, stepping onto the dock at Catania, Sicily, where police photographed them for ID checks, a requirement for asylum-seekers.

READ MORE: Italy president intervenes in migrant crisis, angering Salvini

Italy's populist government had not let them leave the ship earlier, demanding that other European Union countries take them. Only Ireland did, pledging to take 20. Non-EU Albania will take 20, while Italian Catholic bishops said they would care for about 100.

On Aug 16, the Diciotti's crew rescued 190 migrants, most from Eritrea, from a smuggling boat.  The others, including minors and ailing migrants, were allowed off earlier.

Migrants waiting to be disembarked from the Italian Coast Guard ship "Diciotti" in the port of Catania, Italy, Aug 25, 2018. (ORIETTA SCARDINO / ANSA VIA AP)

ALSO READ: Italy denies safe harbour to migrant ship, Spain also reluctant

Italy has threatened economic reprisals against the EU for not helping it enough with migrants.

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