UPDATE - Migrants being moved from Bibby Stockholm after bacteria found: UK Home Office

UPDATE - Migrants being moved from Bibby Stockholm after bacteria found: UK Home Office

No asylum seekers on board have shown symptoms of bacteria, says Home Office


By Burak Bir

LONDON (AA) - All asylum seekers are being moved from UK's controversial barge Bibby Stockholm after Legionella bacteria were found in the water, according to the Home Office on Friday.

A Home Office spokesperson said samples from the water system on the floating barge have shown levels of Legionella, which causes Legionnaires disease, a type of pneumonia.

"As a precautionary measure, all 39 asylum seekers who arrived on the vessel this week are being disembarked while further assessments are undertaken," the spokesman said in a statement.

Meanwhile, no individuals on board have shown any symptoms of the bacteria, said the spokesperson, adding that the asylum seekers are being provided advice and support.

Saying that samples taken relate only to the water system on the Bibby Stockholm, the statement noted that there is no direct risk indication for the wider community of Portland.

The report of bacteria came three days after the Home Office said the first group of asylum seekers were now being housed on the barge after "health and safety checks were completed."

The first group of asylum-seekers were housed on the three-story barge on Monday, while some others refused to move on the barge.

The controversial plan aims to house up to 500 men, aged 18-65, on the floating barge while migrants who are currently staying in hotels, are waiting for the results of their asylum application.

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