In the Mediterranean, Libya’s coast guard said Wednesday it fired warning shots to drive off a Spanish vessel after it wandered into Libya’s territorial waters. But members of the migrant aid group Proactiva dispute the account, saying their boat “Open Arms” was patrolling international waters. Earlier this week, Proactiva said Italy and Malta barred the group from disembarking migrants rescued at sea. Aid groups have come under increasing pressure from Libyan and European governments not to assist refugees and other migrants attempting the perilous crossing. A report this week from the International Organization for Migration found more than 115,000 migrants have crossed into Europe so far this year, and more than 2,400 have died crossing the Mediterranean.
A French court on Tuesday ordered a four-month suspended jail sentence for farmer Cédric Herrou, who led a team of volunteers who provided food and shelter to migrants entering France from Italy in 2016. Outside the court, Herrou told reporters he has no regrets, adding, “It’s the role of a citizen in a democracy to act when the state is failing.”