ROME (AP) — The Latest on Europe’s migration crisis (all times local):
Artists from France, Italy and Belgium have won the Niels Bugge Cartoons Awards, which focused this year on Europe’s migrant crisis.
Jury chairman Lars Refn says Anne Derenne got a 3,000-euro ($3,335) check Saturday for her interpretation of the “Utopia” theme in “a terrific way.” Her cartoon shows an ecstatic couple in a rowing boat approaching a bountiful green island. However, under the water line, it appears it is made up of industrial waste.
Runner-up Marco d’Agostino got 2,000 euros ($2,220) while the third prize went to Luc Vernimmen.
Refn said Saturday the “Utopia” theme was picked “after Europe almost entered a state of shock over the wave of migrants.” The contest was named for the inn near Viborg, 160 miles (260 kilometers) northwest of Copenhagen, where it was held.
Italian coast guard and navy ships, aided by an Irish naval vessel, have saved more than 540 migrants from smugglers’ boats in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Libya.
The rescues Saturday are the latest by a multi-national patrol south of Sicily that has saved thousands this week.
The Irish military said the vessel Le Roisin saved 123 migrants from a 12-meter-long (40-foot) rubber dinghy and recovered a male body.
An Italian navy ship saved 101 migrants on another rubber dinghy, and a ship of the Italian coast guard, which coordinates all the rescues by various navies, cargo vessels and humanitarian organization boats, reported rescuing 322 migrants from a boat in distress.
Meanwhile, with migrant shelters filling up in Sicily, the Italian navy vessel Vega headed toward Reggio Calabria, a southern Italian mainland port, bringing 135 survivors, along with 45 bodies, from a rescue a day earlier. The Vega was due to dock on Sunday.
At the Vatican on Saturday, Pope Francis told several hundred children, among them many migrants, who came from the Italian south to see him that migrants “aren’t a danger but they are in danger.”
Among the audience was a Nigerian youth, who lost his parents in 2014 as the family tried to reach Italy by sea. Francis has repeatedly expressed dismay that some European nations have refused to accept migrants, fleeing poverty or war, and have even thrown up fences and other barriers to thwart the arrivals from journeying northward after reaching the continent’s southern shores.