116 illegal migrants rescued off Libyan coast

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FILE PHOTO: A migrant who was aboard a precarious rubber boat with others jumps to the water as they are rescued by a team of the Sea Watch-3, around 35 miles away from Libya, in Libyan SAR zone, Monday, Oct. 18, 2021. ( Valeria Mongelli)
FILE PHOTO: A migrant who was aboard a precarious rubber boat with others jumps to the water as they are rescued by a team of the Sea Watch-3, around 35 miles away from Libya, in Libyan SAR zone, Monday, Oct. 18, 2021. (Valeria Mongelli via CFP)

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on Sunday said that 116 illegal migrants, including women and children, have been rescued and returned to Libya.

“Last night, 116 persons aboard a rubber boat were returned to Tripoli by Libyan Coast Guard,” UNHCR tweeted.

“Among them were 20 women and 7 children. They embarked from Zuwara one day earlier despite bad conditions. The International Red Cross (IRC) and the UNHCR provided urgent medical care, food and water to all survivors,” UNHCR said.

The UNHCR on Saturday said 198 illegal migrants, suffering from hypothermia and dehydration, were rescued and returned to Libya.

Libya has been suffering insecurity and chaos since the fall of the late leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, making the North African country a preferred point of departure for illegal migrants who want to cross the Mediterranean Sea to European shores.

Rescued migrants end up inside overcrowded reception centers across Libya, despite repeated international calls to close those centers.

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