Banksy Funds the Louise Michel Rescue Boat to Help North African Refugees

Banksy is known for being an England-based graffiti artist. He directs various films and is a political activist. He does all these by also being anonymous. Recently, he’s added another persona in his repertoire – that of a humanitarian.

In 2019, he sent a message to fellow activist and veteran NGO-captain Pia Klemp. He asked her to help him in the process of purchasing a boat to help North African refugees in crossing the Mediterranean. At first, she was surprised and thought it was a joke. Soon she found out it was for real and accepted.

Louise Michel was refurbished from a former French Navy boat and repainted in Banksy’s style. It is run by a 10-person crew of mostly European activists. Currently, they’ve rescued 350 people.

Part of the mission statement described on their website shares that they want to be advocates of maritime law and to be ready to rescue any person without prejudice if they are in peril.

Louise Michel in glorious pink and white

Image credits: mvlouisemichel

Image credits: mvlouisemichel

A short Instagram video about Louise Michel

在 Instagram 查看这篇帖子

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Banksy (@banksy) 分享的帖子 ·

Image credits: MVLouiseMichel

The rescuers in action. They have to act quickly.

Image credits: seawatch_intl

Image credits: MVLouiseMichel

A Tweet from the Louise Michel Twitter account about their rescue and a call to open the ports.

Image credits: MVLouiseMichel

Image credits: MVLouiseMichel

Internet reactions:

Admirers for the rescuers

A supporter for Banksy

She loves Banksy.

While others had quite different opinions

Not very supportive