Syrian refugees rescued off Italian coast

August 28, 2013 15:15

ROME - Italy's coast guard and navy rescued about 350 people, mostly Syrians, off the coast of southeastern Sicily on Wednesday, and a port official said he expected more refugees fleeing Syria's civil war to arrive.

The navy recovered almost 200 people from a badly overcrowded and crippled fishing boat. They said they were Syrians, but most were not carrying passports, so their nationality has yet to be confirmed, a navy spokesman said.

Among those rescued were 48 children, including a four-day-old girl born during the crossing. The baby and her mother were in good condition, the spokesman said.

A second boat carrying about 150 migrants was rescued by the coast guard later, but their nationalities have not yet been determined, said Luca Sancilio, head of the Syracuse port authority.

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