Over 50 Nigerian migrants rescued on way to Italy in the Mediterranean by Libya’s coastguard
No fewer than 50 Nigerian migrants were among the hundreds of migrants rescued today in the Mediterranean by Libya’s coastguard and an international charity, Doctors Without Borders(MSF).
— MSF Sea (@MSF_Sea) March 10, 2018
The Nigerians were aboard a boat with 110 migrants. They were rescued by Aquarius, a ship being operated by MSF, 21 miles from the coast west of Tripoli. The ship will deliver the migrants, who included 18 women and one child, to Italy.
According to Reuters, more than half the migrants on that boat were Nigerians, with the rest from other sub-Saharan African countries as well as two Palestinians.
The Libyan coastguard vessels also intercepted two of the migrant boats, the first an inflatable dinghy that had broken down with 125 people on board off Zawiya, just west of the capital, Tripoli, said Ayoub Qassem, a coastguard spokesman.
The second boat was turned back off Garabulli, east of Tripoli, and had 112 people on board.
The migrants and their smugglers were trying to take advantage of calm seas as they launched a flurry of boats towards Italy.
Meanwhile the coastguard in Zuwara, a former Libyan smuggling hub west of Zawiya, said they had foiled a departure during the night and arrested some migrants whilst others had escaped with smugglers.