A significant number of illegal immigrants arrived today off Italy’s west coast city, Sicily, via the German non-governmental organization SOS Méditerranée.
The arrival of the 600 migrants raised the concerns of observers since this is one of the larger influxes from Libya since Italy had struck an agreement with the Libyan authorities to limit the migrant smuggling.
Out of the 600 illegal immigrants that arrived in Italy at the Port of Palermo on Friday, were 11 pregnant women, a newborn, more than 240 minors and some unaccompanied persons from sub-Saharan #Africa. According to the BBC, aid group SOS Méditerranée ْhas reported that the migrants comes from about 20 countries in Africa and the Middle East. The rescue operation lasted for more than 36 hours and required seven separate rescue operations, according to The Independent in Malta.
According to the Italian news agency Aki, some of the migrants were also among previously arrested migrants released by the Libyan authorities from their detention centers. Along that, the SOS Méditerranée President Valeria Calander stated to SKY TG24 that the instability in Sabratha, Libya has created a new escape door in the North African country for all the other migrants coming from the rest of Africa. The UNHCR also said on Friday that the clashes in Sabratha over the past three weeks have stranded approximately 3,000 families, most of whom have returned to their homes now, and also has displaced well more than 10,000 refugees and migrants who still remain in urgent medical assistance. The UNHCR said that they are sending emergency assistance including sleeping bags, hygiene kits, good and blankets to Libya for the displaced and stricken families in need of help.
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