Libyan Coast Guard rescues more than 300 illegal immigrants

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About 100 migrants are crowded together on deck of the rescue ship "Eleonore". The "Eleonore" took in the migrants on 26.08.2019 off the Libyan coast./ Getty Images)
Rescued migrants sit in a coast guard point in Khoms, some 100 kilometres (60 miles) from the Libyan capital Tripoli, on August 27, 2019, after they were saved off the coast of the Libyan city. Photo by Mahmud TURKIA / AFP)

The Libyan Coast Guard rescued more than 300 illegal immigrants and brought them back to the capital Tripoli, the United Nations Higher Commission of Refugees (UNHCR) said Monday.

“Today at dawn, Libyan Coast Guard returned to Tripoli 315 refugees and migrants after being intercepted/rescued at sea aboard several boats,” the UNHCR tweeted.

“Two persons lost their lives and their bodies were recovered. UNHCR partner IRC (International Rescue Committee) was on site to provide urgent medical care to all survivors,” the UNHCR said.

At least five boats carrying nearly 400 people attempted to flee Libya during the previous 48 hours, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said earlier Monday.

The IOM reiterated call for ending returns of rescued migrants to Libya and establishing a safe alternative disembarkation mechanism.

After the fall of the late leader Gaddafi’s government in 2011, Libya has become a preferred point of departure for thousands of illegal immigrants hoping to cross the Mediterranean towards European shores.

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