28-year-old Nigerian woman gives birth to baby boy (christened Testimony Salvatore) at sea on a migrant boat.
A baby born at sea on Christmas Day after his Nigerian mother was plucked from a floundering migrant boat by the Italian navy has been baptized Testimony Salvatore in honor of the medics who delivered him.
The two-day-old infant, who weighed in at 2.7 kilograms (just under six pounds), and his 28-year-old mother were both recovering in hospital on Saturday after a smooth delivery in testing circumstances, according to the gynecologist who oversaw it.
Little Testimony entered the world at 20 minutes before midnight on December 25, aboard the Italian navy vessel Etna as it headed to the Sicilian port of Messina with hundreds of migrants on board following rescue operations off Libya.
He is the third baby to be delivered by the navy in just over three months: following Gambian girl Yambambi Yete in September and Eritrean boy Aloniab Nahom, who was also delivered on the Etna, earlier this month.
“The lady was brilliant,” said Maita Sartori, the gynecologist who oversaw the latest birth. “She did everything herself, all we had to do was to be there and monitor the labor, talking to her in English.”
The mother, whose first name is Kate according to Italian media, was travelling with Testimony’s 15-month-old sister and was quoted as saying: “I’m really happy with the birth of my son. I was really scared but everything went well in the end.”
She told reporters the family had left Nigeria two months ago and that she and her youngest child had boarded a boat in Libya on December 23, having left her husband and two older sons, aged 6 and 10, in neighboring Algeria.