Video Duration 02 minutes 28 seconds

Pope Francis urges EU leaders to help refugees stranded off Malta

The head of the Roman Catholic Church has urged EU member states to allow 49 refugees and migrants stranded off the coast of Malta to land on their shores

Pope Francis has asked European leaders to address the plight of 49 refugees and migrants stranded off the coast of Malta.

The migrants and refugees have been living aboard two NGO rescue ships after they were saved from their unsafe boats.

Both Italy and Malta have closed their ports to rescue ships, following the hard line set by many EU countries on immigration.

Al Jazeera’s Paul Chaderjian reports.