Libyan navy rescues 458 migrants

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Tripoli, June 25 (IANS) The Libyan navy has rescued 458 migrants in two separate operations off the coast of the cities of Al-Khoms and Zlitan.

Navy spokesman Ayob Qassem on Sunday said coast guards patrol rescued 361 migrants on two rubber boats 53 km off the coast of Al-Khoms, around 120 from Tripoli, Xinhua news agency reported.

“The migrants are from different African nationalities, including 88 women and 44 children,” he said.

Another coast guards patrol earlier rescued 97 migrants of four African nationalities, including 22 women and 26 children, from a rubber boat, Qassem revealed.

The rescue operation took place off the coast of Zlitan, around 150 km from Tripoli. They were taken to the Tripoli naval base and transferred to a reception centre in the capital.

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Last week, the Libyan navy rescued more than 1,000 migrants and recovered bodies of 25 others in separate operations.

Libya is a preferred point of departure for migrants who want to cross the Mediterranean toward Europe because of the insecurity and chaos in their countries.

–IANS

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