AP

Hundreds of migrants reach Italian shores over weekend

Aug 28, 2022, 8:16 AM | Updated: 8:20 am

Migrants, left, are being rescued by volunteers of the Ocean Viking, a migrant search and rescue sh...

Migrants, left, are being rescued by volunteers of the Ocean Viking, a migrant search and rescue ship run by NGOs SOS Mediterranee and the International Federation of Red Cross (IFCR),  Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, some 26 nautical miles south of the Italian Lampedusa island in the Mediterranean sea. 87 survivors, including 3 women, 25 minors were rescued in the rescue operation. (AP Photo/Jeremias Gonzalez)

(AP Photo/Jeremias Gonzalez)

ROME (AP) — Italian authorities scrambled on Sunday to relieve overcrowding in shelters after scores of boats carrying a total of about 1,000 migrants reached Italy’s southern shores and two of its tiny islands over the weekend.

Nearly 50 boats arrived between Friday night and Saturday on Lampedusa island off Sicily, according to state radio and other Italian media. Other boats carrying migrants reached Pantelleria, another tiny island favored by vacationers.

Hundreds of migrants stepped ashore from the virtual flotilla of smugglers’ vessels on those islands. Several of the vessels launched by migrant smugglers held as few as eight passengers. But others had around 100 passengers aboard, many of them from Tunisia, according to the reports.

Other boats reached the shores of the Italian mainland on Saturday, either unaided or assisted by Italian coast guard vessels.

The Italian news agency ANSA said that 92 migrants, most of them from Afghanistan, reached Puglia — the “heel” of the boot-shaped peninsula — in a sailboat on Saturday. Still other migrants sailed to Calabria in the “toe” of the peninsula, while other boats reached Sicily and Sardinia, Italy’s two biggest islands, in the last two days.

On Sardinia, Carabinieri paramilitary police spotted 29 migrants walking along a road, ANSA said.

The humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders tweeted that one of its rescue ships, Geo Barents, saved 25 migrants, including five minors, from a small boat in distress in international waters near Libya on Saturday night. Geo Barents already had other migrants abroad plucked to safety in other rescue operations, the group said.

With the disembarkation of hundreds of migrants from boats in the last days, the residence temporarily housing rescued migrants on Lampedusa quickly became overcrowded. Corriere della Sera said the residence housed 1,500 asylum-seekers, nearly four times its capacity.

Interior ministry authorities arranged for a commercial passenger ferry to sail from Sicily to Lampedusa, where it was expected to arrive on Sunday night, embark 250 migrants and take them to Sicilian migrant residences to lessen crowding on the tiny island’s facility.

While hundreds of thousands of migrants have set sail from Libyan shores aboard smugglers’ boats in the last decades, many also set out from Tunisia.

Italian media noted the Tunisian coast guard had thwarted at least a score of attempts by vessels filled with migrants to head toward Italy and rescued many others from boats in distress on Friday and Saturday.

___

Follow AP’s coverage of migration issues at https://apnews.com/hub/migration

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Most Americans are sleepy new Gallup poll finds...

Associated Press

Most Americans say they don’t get enough sleep, according to new Gallup poll

A new Gallup poll found that most Americans are sleepy — or, at least, they say they are. Multiple factors play into this.

20 hours ago

Near-total abortion ban in Arizona dates back to Civil War era...

Associated Press

Near-total abortion ban dates back to 1864, during the Civil War, before Arizona was a state

The near-total abortion ban resurrected last week by the Arizona Supreme Court dates to 1864, when settlers were encroaching on tribal lands.

21 hours ago

Tracy Toulou...

Associated Press

How to tackle crime in Indian Country? Empower tribal justice, ex-Justice Department official says

A recently retired director of the Justice Dept. says the federal government hasn't given tribal justice systems equal recognition.

2 days ago

Speaker of the House Mike Johnson...

Associated Press

House Speaker Mike Johnson says he will push for aid to Israel and Ukraine this week

House Speaker Mike Johnson said Sunday he will try to advance wartime aid for Israel this week, along with funding for Ukraine.

2 days ago

President Joe Biden speaks at a campaign rally Saturday, March 9, 2024, at Pullman Yards in Atlanta...

Associated Press

US shoots down ‘nearly all’ Iran-launched attack drones as Biden vows support for Israel’s defense

Joe Biden cut short a weekend stay at his beach house to meet with his national security team as Iran launched an attack against Israel.

3 days ago

Protesters in Phoenix shout as they join thousands marching around the Arizona state Capitol after ...

Associated Press

Abortion ruling supercharges Arizona to be an especially important swing state

A ruling this week instituting a near-total abortion ban supercharged Arizona's role, turning it into the most critical battleground.

4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

...

DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s 1 way to ensure your family is drinking safe water

Water is maybe one of the most important resources in our lives, and especially if you have kids, you want them to have access to safe water.

Hundreds of migrants reach Italian shores over weekend