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Almost 500 migrants rescued in the Mediterranean

Aid group rescued 471 people from boats in distress in the Mediterranean Sea on Saturday.

It came amid a recent surge of migrant arrivals in Italy. Among those rescued were 205 children. Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders) helped the Italian coastguard to attend 15 boats in the sea, the aid group posted on X (formerly Twitter).

About 126,000 migrants have arrived in Italy this year, almost double the number of migrants in 2022 as of the same day.

The main blow came on Lampedusa where thousands of people landed this week. The number of arrivals exceeded the permanent population of the island.

During the visit to Lampedusa on Sunday, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen stated European authorities, not people smugglers, would “decide who comes to the European Union and under what circumstances.” The president paid the visit as residents of the island protested against a staggering increase in the number of migrants.

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