686 people on a 50 footer

Not Sailing

On Monday night, nearly 700 migrants arrived at the island of Lampedusa, Italy on a rusted fishing boat. It was the highest-capacity migrant vessel to reach the island since 2016, according to UNHCR, the UN’s refugee agency.

The 686 passengers were a broad mix of nationalities, with arrivals from Egypt, Chad, Morocco, Syria, Bangladesh, Sudan, Nigeria, Ethiopia and Senegal. The boat, a 45-foot fishing vessel, departed Zuwara, Libya and transited north to Lampedusa, where it was intercepted by Italian patrol boats and guided into the harbor.

Five of the passengers were taken to a local clinic for medical treatment, and the rest were escorted to Lampedusa’s overcrowded migrant reception center. An additional 117 migrants arrived in five more vessels on Tuesday morning.  Read on.