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More than 900 migrants rescued off Libya

AFP
17 June 2017 | Libya
Since 2014, more than 1.6 million people have arrived by sea while 13,500 have died on the way.  By MAHMUD TURKIA (AFP/File)
Since 2014, more than 1.6 million people have arrived by sea while 13,500 have died on the way. By MAHMUD TURKIA (AFP/File)

Tripoli (AFP) - The Libyan coastguard has rescued more than 900 African and Asian migrants attempting to reach Europe, a navy spokesman said on Saturday.

"A coastguard patrol from Zawiya (west of Tripoli) intercepted five inflatable boats and a wooden vessel carrying 906 migrants at dawn on Friday," General Ayoub Qassem said.

He added that 25 children and 98 women, including seven who were pregnant, were among those rescued.

"One of the rubber boats was holed and on the point of sinking, while the wooden one did not have a motor," he said.

People traffickers have exploited the chaos in Libya since a 2011 uprising toppled and killed strongman Moamer Kadhafi to boost their lucrative but deadly trade.

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