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The Civil Fleet Podcast

Apr 30, 2022

In today's episode, speedboat driver Brendan talks to us about the Sea-Watch 3's latest rescue mission in the Mediterranean, and what happened when he came across a shipwreck. 

He also talks about how the Libyan Coastguards also handed over the people they'd saved over to his speedboat. 

--- Show notes ---

For more on Sea-Watch, visit:

Follow Sea-Watch on Twitter here: @seawatch_intl

You can read Brendan's evocative article on the fourth rescue operation on The Civil Fleet here: 

For more on Derbyshire Refugee Solidarity, see here:

Operation Mare Nostrum, which Brendan mentions in the episode, was an Italian search-and-rescue mission that saved over 150,000 of lives in the central Mediterranean. It was replaced by several EU navy missions: Operation Triton, Operation Sophia, etc. However, since 2019, the only dedicated rescue assets in the central Mediterranean have been those run by charities, activists and NGOs. 

Brendan mentions the Colibri, which is a reconnaissance plane operated by the French NGO Pilotes Volontaires. You can find out more about them here: @PVolontaires or at

He also mentions Sea-Watch's reconnaissance plane Moonbird. You can read more about that here: or check out episode 1, in which Sea-Watch's Felix tells us all about it.

Brendan refers to himself as "an angry Geordie" at one point in the interview. A Geordie is a nickname for people who come from Newcastle, in the northeast of England.

Frontex is the European Border and Coastguard Agency. It has been accused on multi occasions of helping the Libyan Coastguards pull people back to Libya while ignoring NGO rescuers in the Mediterranean. The investigative journalists at Lighthouse Reports revealed this week that Frontex aided at least 957 refugee pushbacks by Greece in 2020-2021. You can read about it here: 

Apologies for the loud sound around 55 minutes in. That was me taking off my glasses to wipe away a tear.

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