The Sicilian port of Catania was a hive of activity on Saturday after about 800 migrants rescued from rickety boats in the Mediterranean were received by emergency services.
Despite their safe arrival, 45 of them were not lucky as an Italian coastguard said they died in a shipwreck on Friday.
Efforts to boost border controls to stop the influx of migrants, do not seem to deter the migrants, who are taking advantage of warm weather and calm seas to cross from Libya where smugglers operate with impunity.
The migrants, many of whom don’t know how to swim or have life jackets, pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to make the crossing.
The International Organization of Migration (IOM) says that total deaths reported in the Mediterranean this year are over 1400.
IOM (@IOM_news) May 27, 2016
IOM further stated that in 2014 and 2015, more than 320,000 migrants arrived on Italian shores and an estimated 7,000 died in the Mediterranean as they sought to reach Europe.
The overwhelming majority of those arriving in Italy so far this year have been from sub-Saharan Africa.