UK Fishing Vessel That Saved 20K Lives For Sale On eBay

Story ByMichael Leidig, Sub EditorJoseph GolderAgencyCentral European News

An iconic Scottish fishing vessel that reportedly saved more than 20,000 people from drowning in the Mediterranean sea has gone on sale on eBay for 75,000 GBP.

Formally working for the Scottish executive and sailing around the Scottish West Coast doing fisheries research, it was later sold to migrant rescue NGO Sea Watch who used it to save an estimated 20,000 lives in the Mediterranean.

However, now NGO bosses in Dresden, Germany have put it up for sale – on eBay.

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In the promotional notes, they write: “You have here the once-in-a-lifetime chance to buy the former rescue ship ‘Lifeline’ which has a unique character and a long history.”

They add that it is approved for conversion to a houseboat or motor yacht. The asking price is EUR 75,000 and is reportedly negotiable.

The boat is just over 32 m long, almost 8 m wide at its widest point, and has 12 rooms including a kitchen, a laboratory, three showers and two toilets.

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The ship even has its own Wikipedia page, indicating it was commissioned in 1968 when it was called the Clupea and was previously used for fisheries research before it was purchased for its rescue work.

The ship is registered in the Netherlands and was last anchored in the water before Capt Claus-Peter Reisch was accused of breaching the laws of the sea and convicted before having the verdict overturned.

Officials in France and Italy accused the boat and its captain of ignoring the instructions of the Libyan coast guard when carrying out their rescues in the Mediterranean.

Netherlands Minister Cora van Nieuwenhuizen stated in June 2018 that Lifeline was not sailing under the Dutch flag, and in fact simply registered its proof of ownership there.

After that the Dutch authorities withdrew the registration the owners were forced to try and register in Germany but the costs of setting up shop there were too much.

As a result, the boat has now been put up for sale.

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