Refugee fleeing war gives birth on rescue boat, and gives her son a beautiful name
Out of the darkest water, hope for the future.
On Saturday afternoon, shortly before 4pm, a baby boy was delivered on board the rescue ship Aquarius.
The vessel, run by humanitarian aid organisation Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) and SOS Méditerranée, searches the Mediterranean Sea and rescues migrants making dangerous crossings from Northern Africa to Europe, many journeying from Libya to Italy.
The baby boy's mother was escaping the terrible treatment she'd undergone during her year in Libya, RTÉ reports.
The mum suffered beatings and was underfed while held in captivity, she told MSF. She and her partner managed to make their escape and began the sea crossing on Thursday with hundreds of other people.
After resupply and crew change, the #Aquarius has tonight left the port of Catania to head to the international search and rescue zone. Photos: Guglielmo Mangiapane pic.twitter.com/MVA5lyNZrY
— MSF Sea (@MSF_Sea) 18 May 2018
"The situation in Libya is extremely dangerous for refugees and migrants, with very little access to medical care," Irish nurse Aoife Ní Mhurchu told RTÉ.
"If she had gone into labour just 48 hours beforehand she would have given birth hiding on a beach in Libya, without any medical assistance."
The nurse, who works with MSF, said that the mum's boat was meant to leave earlier than Thursday.
"She told me their boat actually departed on Wednesday but after a few short minutes the engine failed and they were returned to shore," Aoife explained.
Happy news from the #Aquarius this afternoon with the birth of a healthy baby boy! Baby Miracle was born at 3.45pm, weighing 2.8kgs, bringing the total number of rescued people to 70. Both mother & baby are well & will disembark tomorrow morning in the port of Catania, Sicily. pic.twitter.com/zvwxeygK6m
— MSF Sea (@MSF_Sea) 26 May 2018
"The smugglers demanded they hide on the beach, then disappeared and didn’t return for 24 hours. At this point, she was left terrified, heavily pregnant, and without food or water."
Thankfully, she was able to give birth on the Aquarius after having been saved by an Italian naval vessel and later transferred to the humanitarian ship.
The healthy baby boy has appropriately been named Miracle, and he and his mother are reportedly faring well. They were set to land at the port of Catania in Sicily.
Miracle is the 36th baby to be born on one of these rescue ships that sail the Mediterranean Sea.
A true miracle in the troubling journey that his parents made, we hope that they find a new place ot call home soon.
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