A fishing vessel with migrants on board intercepted by coast guards off Crotone in Calabria | Photo: Archive/ANSA/Guardia Costeria
A fishing vessel with migrants on board intercepted by coast guards off Crotone in Calabria | Photo: Archive/ANSA/Guardia Costeria

In Calabria, southern Italy, the wreck of a migrant boat is being turned into a monument to those who have died attempting the Mediterranean crossing.

The wreck of a ship used by migrants who were trying to reach Italy is to be turned into a monument to those who died on the journey. The wreck has been donated to the municipality of Crotone in Calabria by the customs agency.

An award ceremony, attended by local authorities, was held on Friday (May 13) at the maritime station of the port of Crotone.

From a fishing boat to a monument

The donated wreck is a 10-meter fishing boat called San Nikolaos. It was used on March 22, 2020, by 14 Iraqi and Iranian Kurdish migrants to reach Crotone. The boat was seized by coast guards and later given to the customs agency.

An artist, Massimo Sirelli, will turn the wreck into an artwork, which is to be placed at the entrance of the port between via Porto Nuovo and via Miscello da Ripe.

"We are giving back to civil society something that was stolen and used in an uncivil manner", said the director general of the customs agency, Marcello Minenna.

"Once boat wrecks are released from seizure, they are given to [this agency] which has to [...] dispose of these ships. The agency will promote this activity [...] to guarantee that the coasts of this land are preserved and honored".

"Crotone is often at the bottom of all rankings," the mayor of Crotone, Vincenzo Voce said of the Calabrian city, "but it is certainly the most welcoming."

"This wreck, which will be restored to beauty, has a particular meaning for those who reach our land after fleeing horrible places," the mayor concluded.

 

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