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16-year-old migrant survives sinking in which 146 are feared drowned

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By Catherine Hardy  with REUTERS
16-year-old migrant survives sinking in which 146 are feared drowned

<p>More than 400 migrants – mainly from the African continent – were rescued by aid agencies after being found floating in a wooden boat off the coast of Libya on Wednesday.</p> <h3><strong>What happened?</strong></h3> <p>The alarm was raised in the early hours of the morning. A 17-metre wooden boat carrying migrants was reportedly drifting off the Libyan coast.</p> <p>On board were migrants from:</p> <ul> <li>Morocco <li>Algeria <li>Libya <li>The Gambia <li>Bangladesh </ul> <p>16 women and two children were also on board. The rescue operation took five hours.</p> <h3><strong>Why did it take so long?</strong></h3> <p>Because the sea was very rough at the time. Rescuers said the migrants would be taken to Sicily.</p> <h3><strong>Is this the only rescue this week?</strong></h3> <p>No. Rescuers picked up a 16-year-old Gambian boy on Tuesday. He was clinging onto a piece of debris and told aid workers he was the sole survivor of a rubber boat which sank with 146 other people on board.</p> <blockquoteclass="twitter-tweet" data-lang="fr"align="center"><p lang="en" dir="ltr"><a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/BREAKING?src=hash">#BREAKING</a> 146 migrants fearedmissingafterboat capsizesin Med: UN agency</p>— <span class="caps">AFP</span> news agency(@AFP) <a href="https://twitter.com/AFP/status/847061403760504833">29 mars 2017</a></blockquote> <script asyncsrc="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script> <p>“He was very tired when they found him. He’s resting now, so we will have more details later,” said <strong>International Organisation for Migration (<span class="caps">IOM</span>) spokesman Flavio di Giacomo</strong> in Rome.</p> <h3><strong>How many have been picked up so far?</strong></h3> <p>The Italian Coastguard says more than 1,100 migrants have been picked up at sea in the last two days. One body has been recovered.</p> <p>The <span class="caps">IOM</span> says nearly 600 migrants have died trying to reach Italy from North Africa this year so far. Migrant arrivals in Italy are reportedly up 50% this year on the same period last year.</p> <p><span class="caps">READ</span>:more details from the <span class="caps">IOM</span> <a href="https://www.iom.int/">here</a></p>