Spanish officials say more than 300 people including newborns have been rescued from a wooden boat off Libya’s coast and taken to an Italian port. The Defence Ministry said water was flooding the boat when rescuers reached it Saturday northeast of the Libyan town of Misrata.
The ministry said a Spanish frigate working on a European border patrol mission and a vessel of the Spanish non-governmental organizations Proactiva Open Arms transferred 329 people from the wooden boat. The migrants included 95 women, three of them pregnant, and 17 children, some of them newborns.
The International Organization for Migration says 4,742 migrants entered Europe by sea this year through January 25, and that 206 others died en route. The ministry said Monday the migrants were taken Sunday to Italy.