Libya pushes ashore 117 Europe-bound mi­grants

Pakistan Observer - - INTERNATIONAL -

TRIPOLI—Libya’s coast guard on Wed­nes­day in­ter­cepted 117 mi­grants on a boat bound for Europe, in­clud­ing six preg­nant women, be­fore tak­ing them back ashore, an of­fi­cial said.

The group had set out from a beach near Garab­ulli, a town about 60 km (40 miles) to the east of Tripoli, said Col. Ashraf al-Badri.

More than 10,000 peo­ple have died cross­ing the Mediter­ranean to Europe since 2014, the United Na­tions said on Tues­day, as the Euro­pean Union un­veiled fresh plans Africa.

Those in­ter­cepted on Tues­day were re­ceived by medics in Tripoli, be­fore they were taken to ac­com­mo­da­tions in the cen­ter of the Libyan cap­i­tal.

“The 117 mi­grants, in­clud­ing six preg­nant women, were in­ter­cepted off Garab­ulli and brought to a port in Tripoli by the coast guard’s speed­boats,” Badri told AFP.

Badri did not dis­close their na­tion­al­ity, but an AFP pho­tog­ra­pher said most were of African ori­gin.

Fol­low­ing a rash of deadly ship­wrecks in re­cent weeks which claimed the lives of hun­dreds of peo­ple, the UN refugee agency said the num­ber of deaths at sea had risen sharply this year, with a record 2,814 peo­ple drown­ing since Jan­uary.

And in the past few days, the over­all num­ber who have died since the start of 2014 has reached 10,085, the UNHCR said.—Agen­cies to stem the mi­grant flow from

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