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Between Music drown the EU anthem at the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea

To remind us of Europe’s sunken human rights and the thousands of refugees who have drowned,

 Between Music let themselves sink to bottom of the Mediterranean Sea

to play EU’s hymn of joy as a mass of death.

  • The German humanitarian organisation United4Rescue launches the video campaign “Drowned Requiem” together with the Danish artist group Between Music:

  • Beethovens’ “Ode to Joy”, which is the EU anthem, is performed as an underwater-requiem on the bottom of the Mediterranean

  • Petition to the EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen

  • United4Rescue collects donations for a new rescue-ship - “SEA-EYE 4”

In an extraordinary action, the Drowned Requiem campaign reminds us of all those people who continue to drown while escaping to Europe and the human rights that drown with them. 

It is the Danish artist group Between Music who has drowned the European anthem at the bottom of the Mediterranean. The video is launched throughout Europe along with a petition to EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen to stop the tragedy at the Mediterranean and to support state sea rescue. In addition, the campaign is raising funds for the new rescue ship “SEA-EYE 4”. The campaign has made headlines in German media (i.a. WDR and Deutschlandfunk) and the video is currently shared on social media.

There are still people dying on their escape across the Mediterranean. And Europe is watching, closing its borders and ignoring their duty to rescue at sea. Since 2014, more than 20.000 refugees have drowned in the Mediterranean Sea. At the same time, civil sea rescue is being prevented from saving lives and five rescue ships are currently being held on flimsy grounds. “Fort Europe” has become a reality. This is despite the fact that rescue at sea is a state task and that all EU Member States have pledged to respect the Human Rights, which says that every human has the right to life, freedom and personal security, regardless of ethnicity, gender, religion or national origin.

"We no longer want to watch indifferently and inactively as the Mediterranean becomes a mass grave. That is why we commemorate all the dead fugitives with this requiem. With every dead person in the Mediterranean, our European values also perish! And at the same time we want to do everything to prevent further deaths. We are sending another ship,"  

Sandra Bils, founding member of United4Rescue.

Underwater music: Between Music

Beethovens’ “An die Freude” is performed by Between Music. The Danish artist group Between Music explores human nature and what we as humans have in common, despite differences in nationality, religion and culture.

Starting from water as the common cornerstone of life, they have created the underwater concert AquaSonic through 14 years of artistic research. This has culminated in a spectacular concert performance where 5 musicians perform in large glass tanks filled with water.

After the premiere in 2016, the project went viral and reached millions of audiences through i.a. BBC, Discovery Channel, ARD and Time Magazine, and has been performed in sold-out concert halls worldwide. The action in the Mediterranean was the first time the musicians performed on the seabed outside their tanks.

Between Music is part of Drowned Requiem to put focus on human rights.

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“Water gives life and connects us across national borders. But it also takes life and divides us. When people flee from unlivable conditions, the Mediterranean becomes a very concrete example of exactly that. The declaration of Human Rights is one of the most beautiful accomplishments that we as human beings have agreed upon - and should be something that unites us. But unfortunately, those rights are ignored when we let people drown people in the Mediterranean. Although the refugee situation is incredibly complex and parts of Europe are deeply affected, human rights are not something we can compromise on. They are absolutely fundamental to a world that guarantees every one of us - no matter who we are and where we were born - the right to life, freedom and security.”

Between Music

The initiators: United4Rescue

United4Rescue is an alliance that supports civil sea rescue in the Mediterranean. The alliance unites more than 660 large and small organisations, initiatives, companies, associations and foundations from the most diverse social areas. Well-known alliance partners include the German Trade Union Federation (DGB), World Vision Germany, fritz-kola, the Coordination Council of Muslims and the Protestant Church in Germany. 

In January 2020, the non-profit organisation United4Rescue made it possible to purchase the rescue ship SeaWatch 4. In addition, United4Rescue supports other civil sea rescue organisations, to support other rescue ships in leaving port and saving lives.


“Drowned Requiem” is the winter campaign 2020/2021 of United4Rescue.

Skærmbillede 2020-11-27 kl. 08.53.56 (2)




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