Saving lives can’t be divisive. That’s why a new ship with a big white “E” will navigate the Mediterranean Sea. The vessel has a red hull, is more than fifty meters long and has low decks. Soon, it will leave the port of Genoa and go out into the open sea. If those living on the north shore of that ‘water cemetery’ bearing the name of Mediterranean had chosen life, the “Life Support” would not have been greeted by the applause of a people packed square, on a late summer night, in the Italian city of Reggio Emilia. It would not be ready to sail now; . if they had chosen life, that ship would have another job.

“Mom, I’m thirsty.” That’s how Loujin died, asking for water. She was four years old and had been at sea for ten days on a boat that launched an SOS to which no one responded until was too late on a still-very-hot September. She and her family were fleeing the war in Syria with the impossible hope of a refugee camp in Lebanon. She died along with six other refugees: “They died of thirst, hunger and severe burns,” said Chiara Cardoletti, Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Italy, on Twitter.

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Ship “Life Support” in the port of Genoa. Credit: Emergency