Sweden plans to house migrants on luxury cruise ship Ocean Gala | World News - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

Sweden plans to house migrants on luxury cruise ship Ocean Gala

AFP | By, Stockholm
Feb 18, 2016 10:48 PM IST

Sweden plans to house nearly 1,800 migrants on a luxury cruise ship, as it struggles to cope with its share of the huge migrant influx into Europe.

Sweden plans to house nearly 1,800 migrants on a luxury cruise ship, as it struggles to cope with its share of the huge migrant influx into Europe, officials said on Thursday.

An American charter company, US Shipmanagers, is set to provide its liner the Ocean Gala, built in 1982 and transformed into a floating hotel anchored in a Baltic Sea port. “The provider has to find a homeport and the vessel has to be appraised” to make sure it meets safety and comfort standards, Swedish migration agency spokesman Alexandra Elias told AFP.

Unlock exclusive access to the latest news on India's general elections, only on the HT App. Download Now! Download Now!

Negotiations are well on track to agree details of the arrangement, under which the agency will pay 450 Swedish krona (48 euros) per passenger to US Shipmanagers.

The charter company wants to anchor the Ocean Gala in Haernoesand, some 400 kilometres north of Stockholm, but local authorities there are opposed, officially for administrative reasons.

Sweden is struggling to find space for the 163,000 asylum seekers who arrived in the Scandinavian country last year, part of the huge wave of migrants flooding into Europe, many fleeing war in Syria.

Due to a shortage of beds in migrant centres, thousands are housed in churches, mosques, gymnasiums and evacuation centres run by civil security authorities. “The situation is still tense. In 2016 we will need an extra 20,000-30,000 places,” said Elias.

Five thousand refugees housed in campsites or holiday villages will have to make way for tourists before the summer. The tide of refugees entering Sweden was significantly reduced after Stockholm reinstated random border controls in November.

Slightly fewer than 700 asylum seekers were registered in the last seven days, compared to some 10,000 new arrivals per week last October.

Tell us what your First Vote will stand for in a short video & get a chance to be featured on HT’s social media handles. Click here to know more!

Get Current Updates on India News, Elections 2024, Lok sabha election 2024 voting live , Karnataka election 2024 live in Bengaluru , Election 2024 Date along with Latest News and Top Headlines from India and around the world.
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Saturday, May 11, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On