Italian Navy and Coast Guard Rescue 800 Migrants in Mediterranean

579ED483-4DD3-4A36-9467-A82C2107C1B4_w640_r1_sVOA News – Authorities say Italian navy and coast guard search teams rescued around 800 migrants early Friday.

“They are very tired, dehydrated, they vomited of course, but the general conditions were good. Many children, almost 60 to 70, and 15 to 18 pregnant women. It is still difficult to count them,” said Ludovico Pietrosanti, a doctor from the Order of Malta.

Around 400 of the migrants were rescued by navy ships assigned to patrols in the Mediterranean Sea following a shipwreck earlier this month near the coast of Lampedusa, where more than 300 migrants – mostly Eritreans – died.

Several dozen Eritreans were rescued Friday south of Lampedusa, and two coast guard boats brought more than 200 migrants to safety.

The coast guard says around 200 refugees, believed to be Syrians, managed to arrive in Lampedusa on their own in another vessel.

Authorities say worsening humanitarian conditions in Syria and in the Horn of African have spurred a surge in refugees fleeing to Europe by way of Lampedusa.

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