Libyan coastguards rescue 209 illegal migrants

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Tripoli, Feb. 11, 2021 A total of 209 illegal migrants, who were on board a boat north of the city of Khoms, 120 km west of Tripoli, have been rescued by the Libyan coastguards, a Libyan Navy spokesperson said on Wednesday.

He said that the rescue operation was conducted in accordance with maritime rescue standards.

The rescue of the migrants took place, thanks to two successful operations carried out by the naval ships “Oubari” and “Sabratha”. They have been disembarked at the Tripoli naval base.

The Navy Spokesman said that humanitarian and medical assistance was provided to the migrants upon their arrival before being handed over to the body in charge of combating illegal immigration.

One of the crew members of “Sabratha” was the victim of “attacks by migrants, causing him to break his hand”, he said, adding that one migrant tried to escape during the landing at the naval base and another jumped from the boat but was saved.

Some 469 migrants, including 384 men and 35 young minors, were brought back by the Libyan coastguard during the first two months of 2021, according to the International Organisation for Migration (IOM).

It stated that 12 deaths were recorded and 67 migrants were missing, including 44 women and six underage girls, during the same period.

In 2020, 11,881 illegal migrants were brought back to Libya, while 386 died at sea and 597 went missing, according IOM.

Libya, both a country of transit and destination for illegal immigration, has been confronted in recent years with a significant flow of migrants, some of whom seek to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Europe.

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