NGO rescues more than 270 people in central Mediterraean

Saturday 25 Dec 2021

A German NGO said Saturday that one of its migrant rescue ships has picked up more than 270 people from the central Mediterranean Sea in three operations since Friday.

German migrant rescue charity Sea-Eye 4 ship
File Photo: German migrant rescue charity Sea-Eye 4 ship, has picked up the migrants in four rescue missions since December 16 in the Maltese search and rescue zone , the NGO said in a statement. AFP

Sea Watch said on its Twitter account that its ship, Sea-Watch 3, helped two inflatables that had run into trouble in the early hours of Christmas Day.

The two dinghies were carrying around 100 and 80 people respectively and were rescued around 38 nautical miles (70 kilometres) off the coast of Libya, a spokesman told AFP.

Sea Watch said its team was now looking after around 270 people in all, after picking up 93 people in a wooden boat in international waters south of the Italian island of Lampedusa on Friday morning.

Sea-Watch 3 set out on its "Christmas rescue operation" on Thursday evening.

The rescue ship has been patrolling the sea off the Libyan coast since November 2017 and helping any vessels in distress.

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