Last week, seven hapless members of the anti-immigration party Lega Nord attempted to make a point about the volume of asylum seekers coming from Africa to Europe, by sailing a rubber dinghy from Italy to Tunisia, flying the party’s flag.

But just off the cost of Malta, the dighy’s motor caught fire and the men were forced to call for assistance, according to Malta’s Independent newspaper.

lega nord

The flag of the Lega Nord was reportedly flying from the dinghy (file photo)

Managing to put out the fire, the men launched a distress signal but apparently fired the launcher the wrong way round, directly into the boat, and were all dumped into the sea.

After launching a second distress flare, the Maltese Armed Forces spotted troubled dinghy, and came to their rescue.

The seven included brothers Diego and Giovanni Murtaro, Michele Brambilla, Gino Troisi, Giacomo Gremini, Fausto Sarti and Remo Girenni, and party secretary Matteo Salvini, all from the northern Italian town of Modena.

The men will have to pay costs for their rescue to the Maltese Armed Forces.

The seven have been roundly mocked in Italian and Maltese media.

“Instead of covering themselves with glory, they only succeeded in covering themselves with ridicule,” the Maltese paper said.

“And they actually proved that it is easy for sea trips of this sort to end in tragedy – and in Malta, where neither they nor asylum seekers want to land.”

From The Huffington Post UK  . Report by  . 07/04/2014