Italian coastguards have been searching for survivors after a boat transporting about 50 migrants capsized off the Italian island of Lampedusa, south of Sicily.
The mishap occurred on the night of Friday to Saturday as coastguards were transferring the migrants from the ship to the shore in their launches, the Italian Coastguard Service announced in a press release.
According to testimonies from survivors on Saturday morning, five persons were missing.
In a press release issued on Saturday evening, the Coastguard Service said “45 migrants, all men, have been rescued at Lampedusa so far.”
It said “the search continues for possible missing persons” with two coastguard launches, and with helicopter support.
Friday night’s operation had followed “a particularly intense day” due to the spotting of a sizeable number of vessels transporting migrants earlier on Friday, the Coastguard Service had stated on Saturday morning.
The Brussels Times