Accessibility links

Breaking News

7,000 Migrants Rescued in Mediterranean in 2 Days

This undated image made available by the Italian Navy Marina Militare shows migrants being rescued at sea.

Italian officials say at least 7,000 migrants have been rescued from small boats in the Mediterranean Sea in just two days.

Officials say about 2,000 migrants were rescued Friday after 5,000 were pulled from the sea the previous day.

Italian ships along with others belonging to Doctors Without Borders carried out more than 40 rescue operations, pulling people from overcrowded small rubber boats and dinghies.

The migrants, believed to be mainly from Arab and sub-Saharan African countries, are trying to reach Europe.

Authorities say a break after a week of bad weather is responsible for an upsurge in sea crossing attempts as smugglers resume their illegal operations.

Most of the crossings start in Libya, where the navy said it intercepted 1,000 migrants in Libyan waters Thursday.