Five migrants found dead during rescue operation near Spain's coast

Five migrants drowned and 193 were rescued after six rafts sank in the western Mediterranean, off the Spanish coast, the Spanish coastguard said on Thursday.

Spain has become the main entry point for migrants fleeing Africa to seek a better life in Europe, overtaking Italy and Greece, as Italy's new populist government refuses to admit rescue boats.

Dozens of migrants dressed in hooded white forensic suits disembarked from a rescue vessel on Thursday in the port of Motril in the southern region of Andalusia, video footage showed.

Migrants found dead or missing in Spanish waters have already surpassed the 153 reported for last year, Spanish coastguard figures show. By the end of August this year, 155 migrants had been reported dead or missing without counting the latest fatalities.