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Italian Navy and Coastguard reports arrival of 3,300 migrants in Sicily


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Italian Navy and Coastguard reports arrival of 3,300 migrants in Sicily

The Italian Navy and Coastguards say around 3,300 migrants will arrive in Sicily over the course of Saturday after being rescued at sea south of the island.

Navy officials released a video showing 450 people being transferred from a rickety boat to a patrol vessel, then on to the Naval Vessel Libra.

According to the Italian government, 90 percent of the migrants currently in Italy came across from Libya, considered a “gateway to Europe”.

Authorities report most of those seen on the boats in the video are of Syrian origin, with ten percent said to be children.

At over 43,000 the amount of migrants to reach Italy in the first five months of 2014 has already equalled the figure for 2013.

Five Italian vessels are involved in an operation called Mare Nostrum, or “our sea”, aimed at fighting human smuggling.

The mission has been ongoing since 366 men, women and children drowned in a shipwreck off the coast of Lampedusa in October 2013.

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