The Aquarius is bound for Valencia but could stop in Palma. | Tony Gentile

President Armengol announced in the Balearic parliament yesterday that Spain is now one of the countries most concerned "about people who are dying in the Mediterranean". Things have changed, she observed, in reference to the Spanish government's offer to take the 629 people on board the Aquarius.

Armengol explained that on Monday she had spoken to the new deputy prime minister, Carmen Calvo, in order to offer Balearic assistance to the migrants. What role the Balearics might have is yet to be specified. The Sánchez government had contacted the PSOE-led regional administration in Valencia about the migrants going there, and the boat is expected to arrive at the port in Valencia in a day or two.

However, when the boat enters Spanish waters, the Balearics will provide the closest ports of call. As the situation on board the ship is said not to be good, the government is standing by in order to be able to help or receive migrants. The social services minister, Fina Santiago, says that the government is preparing to take in up to thirty migrants. The final decisions will be made by Madrid.

Palma town hall has given its support to the government by saying that it will assist with the migrants and provide reception facilities.