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Nearly 200 migrants rescued off the Libyan coast

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Image extraite du reportage Africanews / AP

Libya

Almost 200 migrants were rescued off the Libyan coast by the SOS Mediterranee humanitarian organization on Saturday.

The 196 migrants, who mostly came from Syria, Eritrea, Nigeria, Cameroon and Ghana, were rescued in four different operations.

There were 28 women among the rescued - at least two of whom were pregnant - and 33 minors, including two children under the age of five.

In the first operation on Saturday morning, 57 people were rescued from a rubber dinghy in distress, spotted from the deck of the SOS Mediterranee Ocean Viking ship.

During the second operation, 54 people were rescued, some of whom had fuel burns.

Another 64 migrants, onboard a wooden boat, were rescued in the third operation with the help of the Sea-Watch Seabird aircraft.

In the final operation, 21 migrants were rescued, most of whom were Syrians. The migrants are now all on the Ocean Viking, waiting to find out where they'll be able to disembark.

Migrant boat departures in overcrowded boats from Libya Morocco and Tunisia to Italy Spain and other parts of Europe have increased in recent months.

According to the United Nations’ migration agency, more than 1,100 people fleeing conflict and poverty in Africa and the Middle East have died this year in the Mediterranean.

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