Libya’s coastguard picked up 490 migrants off the coast of Tripoli on Sunday in the third rescue operation of the day.
Rami Ghameed, the commander of the Ras Ajdir ship which picked up the migrants, said that throughout the day, a number of coastguard ships across the country’s waters picked up a little over nine hundred migrants from a total of six rubber dinghies.
‘‘There were a total of six rubber boats, two were rescued by (the Libyan coastguard’s) central sector, the Ras Ajdir ship rescued three of the boats, and the Sabratha (coastguard) ship rescued one boat. The Sabratha ship is on its way to Tripoli’s naval base. The number of those rescued on the boats picked up by the central sector was around 361 people, and this ship, the Ras Ajdir, picked up around 490 people’‘, Ghameed said.
The number of those rescued on the boats picked up by the central sector was around 361 people, and this ship, the Ras Ajdir, picked up around 490 people.
Sunday’s rescue operations brought the total number of migrants trying to reach Europe, but taken back to Libya, to well over 1,000 since last week alone.
Libya’s western coast is the main departure point for migrants fleeing wars and poverty and trying to reach Europe.
The number of crossings has sharply dropped since July 2017 due to a more active coastguard presence with support from the European Union.