Almost 500 migrants reach Italy, more deaths reported at sea

November 16, 2016 12:27

CATANIA, Italy - Almost 500 migrants arrived at the port of Catania on Wednesday after being rescued earlier this week near the coast of Libya, with the influx of refugees heading to Europe showing no signs of slowing.

Hundreds of migrants, mostly men from sub-Saharan Africa, huddled under grey blankets on the deck of the Italian coast guard vessel Diciotti as they started to disembark in pouring rain.

A second ship, the Aquarius, operated by the non-governmental group SOS Mediterranee, was due to dock at an Italian port in the next two days carrying some 120 migrants and the bodies of nine people who died trying to make the perilous Mediterranean crossing.

Mathilde Auvillain, a spokeswoman for SOS Mediterranee aboard the Aquarius, said that among the migrants were a group of 23 people who were plucked from the sea on Tuesday by an oil tanker after their rubber boat started to sink.

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