Tripoli [Libya], March 9 (ANI/Xinhua): The International Organization for Migration (IOM) on Monday said that 100 illegal migrants have been rescued off the Libyan coast over the past week.
These migrants were intercepted at sea and returned to Libya on March 2-8, said IOM.
A total of 4,129 illegal migrants, including 293 women and 224 children, have been rescued and returned to Libya so far this year, it said.
The organization also noted that 34 illegal migrants have died and 160 others have gone missing on the Central Mediterranean route so far this year.
According to IOM, 323 migrants died and 417 others went missing on the Central Mediterranean route in 2020, while 11,891 illegal migrants were rescued and returned to Libya.
Due to the insecurity and chaos in the North African nation following the fall of its leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, thousands of illegal immigrants, mostly Africans, chose to cross the Mediterranean from Libya towards Europe.
Many illegal migrants were either rescued at sea or arrested by the authorities, and detained inside overcrowded reception centers in Libya, despite repeated international calls for closing those centers. (ANI/Xinhua)