Sea Punk I is on its way again!

Sea Punk I is on its way again!

Our ship has left the Sicilian harbour of Augusta and is now underway in the central Mediterranean to document the situation on the scene and provide humanitarian aid.

Our crew on board is able to provide first aid to people in distress at sea in coordination with the Italian authorities.

The year is less than two months old and yet more than 110 people have already drowned in the Mediterranean.

What happens far too often is not a boat accident. It has absolutely nothing to do with bad luck or good fortune. People on the move are putting their lives in danger in unseaworthy boats with inadequate provisions. This is the logical consequence of the EU’s years-long policy of sealing people off, the failure to provide sea rescue and the criminalisation of civilian offers of help.

Sea rescue is not a crime.

Sea rescue is a promise of humanity and solidarity.


Our motto “Just do it” comes from the fact that we no longer want to or can stand by and watch people drown in the Mediterranean in search of an existence worth living. We have already achieved a lot in the last four years: We bought and rebuilt a ship, we have sailed a successful rescue mission and pulled 83 people out of life-threatening situations.

All of this was only possible thanks to hundreds of hours of voluntary work in the organisation, on the ship, in the street teams and – in case we don’t mention it often enough – thanks to your donations. Thank you!


We are now going one step further: we want to fulfil our promise and do so continuously. To do this, we need to ‘professionalise’. We need a permanent crew that can sail regularly and routinely; an organisation in the background that looks after media work, fundraising and the street teams.

At some point, all this work and responsibility can no longer be managed on a voluntary basis. Regular donations give us the greatest security here. This enables us to plan the next missions, maintain Sea Punk I and continue to help.

Of course, we are happy about any one-time donation, no matter how small. But if you have the opportunity to give up one or two to-go cappuccinos, packets of smokes or Çiğ Köfte a month and give us a permanent donation, you will be supporting us in the long term and giving us room to plan.


In recent weeks and months, the media have often reported that a change in the law could make it possible to criminalise civil sea rescue in the Mediterranean in Germany too. We have therefore been asked from many sides whether we are now afraid of criminalisation because what we do could become a criminal offence. Even though we take the increasing criminalisation of civilian sea rescuers, other supporters and, above all, people fleeing in Europe very seriously, we consider the potential criminalisation of civilian sea rescue to be the least problematic part and, above all, not the aim of the law in which this amendment is contained.

Because while politicians from the federal government and the opposition – above all Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock – have adorned themselves with the fact that they attended the mass demonstrations against right-wing (extremism) in recent weeks, the same leadership team of party politicians has passed the so-called Rückführungsverbesserungs-Gesetz (German). Even the name is somehow cynical, because this law has in mind what Olaf Scholz recently announced in Der Spiegel (German) as his declared goal: he wants to finally deport people on a larger scale.

Anni, lawyer and part of the Sea Punks legal team, explains: “The law contains around 40 different measures. 39 of them relate solely to people with a history of flight or migration. It aims to deport more people, at any cost. Even at the cost of massive violations of fundamental and human rights. And we can already see in practice that the spirit of the law is having an effect: the number of deportations in which long-established taboos are being broken is increasing, even though the so-called “Repatriation Improvement Act” has not even come into force yet. Yes, assisting refugees is also potentially a criminal offence. But let’s be honest: here too, it is the relatives and friends of people on the run who are most at risk. Not us as sea rescuers. The public debate about the criminalisation of sea rescue is therefore extremely distorted, because it’s not about us!”

As an association, we would therefore like to emphasise once again: show solidarity with those who are really being targeted by this inhumane law. Support those who are already suffering from the shift to the right, who are being treated with hostility on the street, who have worse chances on the housing market or whose applications are not read because they have the wrong surname or are subjected to police violence because they are not white. Together against a system of oppression!

REASON TO REJOICE: Partial acquittal for humanitarian aid workers on Lesbos #freehumanitarians

Finally some good news!

That’s what Steffi, part of the Sea Punks Media Team, thought a fortnight ago. And wanted to share it with you:

“Maybe you already know the successful Netflix film “The Swimmers” about the life story of Sarah Mardini and her younger sister Yusra – if not, watch it! The two sisters from Syria are competitive swimmers and fled the war in 2015, travelling from their hometown of Damascus to Istanbul and from there on to Europe via Izmir. The film tells their life story.

In the end, they both ended up in Berlin. However, Sarah Mardini soon returned to Lesbos to help refugees there as a volunteer for the Greek aid organisation Emergency Response Center International (ERCI), including as a translator and first aider on the beach. Together with the German-Irish lifeguard Seán Binder and other helpers, Mardini was arrested at Lesbos airport in summer 2018 and accused by the Greek authorities of espionage, aiding and abetting illegal immigration and belonging to a criminal organisation, among other things. Since then, the Syrian woman, who lives in Berlin, has been charged in Greece and faces a long prison sentence. Now – after six years! – a first acquittal. The court found Sarah and the other defendants NOT GUILTY of at least some of the charges, including espionage, forgery of documents and illegal use of radio frequencies.

The lengthy trial meant a massive mental and health burden for those affected. This first acquittal was therefore very important for them. It is also a political signal in a trial that a report by the EU Parliament called “currently the biggest case of criminalisation of solidarity in Europe”.

Nevertheless, it is only a stage victory. The more serious charges will be heard in a second trial, which is still pending. Among other things, they are accused of smuggling and still face up to 20 years in prison.”

You can find out more about the Free Humanitarians on their Insta channel, follow and support where you can:

Free Humanitarians (@freehumanitarians)

If you want to learn more about the story, here is a reading tip and a film tip:

Trial on Lesbos: A little less injustice | ZEIT ONLINE

Report: Against the current – Sara Mardini’s commitment to humanity | ARD Mediathek


In January, our hard-working street teams were already represented with cosy stands at Fjørt, Talco, Buster Shuffle, Dÿse, Götz Widmann and Moritz Neumeier.

In March, our street teams start the tour for our documentary about our first mission “Good luck, good life”.

07.03. Willa Wuller, Trier PREMIERE
8.3. AJK Bad Kreuznach
9.3. Speyer, Eckpunkt
18.3. Rockenhausen, circus tent

More film dates will follow and of course we will still be at the start at concerts.

Check out our social media channels!


We have summarised our work over the past year in an annual report. It was a year of professionalisation and bureaucratic challenges for our still relatively small association. Our street teams have also grown continuously and have reached many people at events.

Love & Rage
Your Punkies