Since Monday, 5600 refugees have been rescued, bringing the total number of refugees since the beginning of the year to almost 40.000 migrants to Italy via the Mediterranean Sea

The Italian navy reports that it rescued 562 refugees from a sinking boat off the coast of Libya today. 5 refugees could only be recovered dead. There could also have been more drownings. The boat had sent out SOS calls for help with a satellite phone 18 miles off the Libyan coast, whereupon the two Italian warships Bettica and Bergamini rushed to the rescue. The ship, which was completely overloaded with refugees, was unstable and capsized.

Italian navy saves the lives of 562 refugees off the Libyan coast

The capsizing boat. Image: marina militare

It is now clear that with the Balkan route closed, refugees are once again trying to cross the Mediterranean from Libya to Europe. Only yesterday 3000 people were rescued by the Italian navy. 23 boats with refugees identified. More than 1000 refugees, including 260 unaccompanied minors, were brought to the port of Palermo. Since Monday, 5600 refugees have thus been brought to safety.

This, according to Italian newspapers, has rescued more than 3,000 refugees in recent days. Admittedly, there could be more on the way. 850 refugees were sent back by the Libyan coast guard, according to the IOM.

Italian navy saves the lives of 562 refugees off the coast of libya

The capsizing boat. Image: Marina militare

Yesterday, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported that since the beginning of the year, up to 21. May 191.134 refugees cross the Mediterranean from Libya or Tunisia to Italy (32).486), Greece (155.837), Cyprus (28) and Spain (1.063) have arrived. 1.370 had drowned, 24 percent fewer than in the same period last year. On the land way it was 5.352 fugitives.

Between the 15. and 22. May are 1.621 refugees arrived in Italy, 57 percent more than in the previous week. 280 refugees arrived in Greece, 89 percent more than in the previous week. Apparently no one else made it to Bulgaria. The figures show that the flow of refugees now seems to be shifting away from Greece to Italy. Overall, the number of refugees increased by 31 percent from the previous week. Most of the refugees coming to Italy are from Nigeria, Gambia, Senegal, Guinea and the Ivory Coast, while those coming to Greece are from Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Iran.

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