MILAN – An Italian ship brought nearly 1,200 migrants to the Sicilian port of Augusta as Italian officials sounded the alarm over the rising tide of migrants trying to enter Europe.
Navy Commander Aldo Dolfino told Sky TG24 on Friday that migrants had been evacuated from eight life rafts and one boat, which alone carried some 500 migrants.
Italy’s top security official told Parliament last week that 20,500 migrants had arrived so far this year, a huge increase over the 2,500 in the same period of 2013. Most boats come from Libya carrying migrants from Africa.
Save the Children has noted an increase in the number of minors, many traveling alone.
On Thursday, 700 African migrants stormed the fence at Spain’s North African enclave of Melilla, and 140 got in.