• Italy edition
 
Italy rescues 400 migrants off Lampedusa
The number of arrivals to Lampedusa has trebled in the past year. Photo: Italian coast guard press office/AFP

Italy rescues 400 migrants off Lampedusa

Published: 03 Jul 2013 14:30 GMT+02:00

The navy said in a statement it had found a boat carrying around 80 migrants and that there were no fatalities aboard, as had been reported earlier by a Tunisian fishing vessel which spotted them.

But it said that the condition of the boat was deemed "unstable" and its passengers, including 10 women and one child, were being taken on board a patrol boat and would be taken to Lampedusa.

Two coast guard vessels which had also been scrambled to the area will remain in position, amid an uptick in migrant arrivals in recent weeks.

A joint navy and coast guard operation earlier on Wednesday intercepted a boat carrying more than 200 migrants and two French journalists also off the
coast of Lampedusa, Italian media reported.

A total of 227 people were on board, including 41 women and four children. The rocky outcrop in the central Mediterranean Sea is a transit point for thousands of migrants into Europe, who often make perilous journeys on rickety fishing boats or rubber dinghies.

The arrivals on Lampedusa, which is closer to North Africa than to the Italian mainland, have increased drastically since the beginning of the Arab Spring revolutions in 2011.

Hundreds have drowned or been suffocated in the often heavily overcrowded boats, often travelling without sufficient food and fuel on board.

Also on Wednesday, 65 migrants were rescued off the coast of Italy's southern Calabria region on a boat that was taking on water and risked sinking.

Pope Francis has said he wants to visit Lampedusa on Monday to pray for people who have lost their lives in the crossings and offer support to the local population, which has hosted the migrants.

Nearly 8,000 migrants have arrived in Italy since the start of the year - double the number from last year over the same period. The highest number of
migrants -- 3,648 people, or three times more than last year - landed on Lampedusa.

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Ferrari's Raikkonen vows 'fighting' F1 season
Kimi Raikkonen won Ferrari's last world title in 2007. Kimi Raikkonen photo: Shutterstock

Ferrari's Raikkonen vows 'fighting' F1 season

Kimi Raikkonen promised new Ferrari teammate Sebastian Vettel a tussle on the track next year when they will target a long-awaited Formula One world title for the struggling 'Scuderia'. READ  

Italian baby tests positive for cocaine
Doctors discovered traces of cocaine in the baby's blood. Cocaine photo: Shutterstock

Italian baby tests positive for cocaine

The parents of a six-month-old child in Padua, northern Italy, are being investigated by police after their baby tested positive for cocaine. READ  

Champions League
Angry Juve coach wants group top spot
Massimiliano Allegri said he was "very angry" over his team's recent performance against Lazio. Photo: Marco Bertorello/AFP

Angry Juve coach wants group top spot

Angry Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri has called on the Italians to qualify in style for the last 16 of the Champions League by beating Atletico Madrid to finish top of Group A. READ  

Europol cracks Italian fake money gang
Gang members are accused of “distributing counterfeit money on a worldwide scale”. Money photo

Europol cracks Italian fake money gang

Europol has cracked an "infamous organized crime group" in Italy which traded fake money around the world, the EU's law enforcement agency has said. READ  

Pilot dies after crashing into Calabria restaurant
An investigation has been launched to determine the cause of the crash, which happened in good weather conditions. Plane photo: Shutterstock

Pilot dies after crashing into Calabria restaurant

An Italian pilot died on Wednesday after his two-seater plane crashed into a restaurant, during a flight to announce the birthday of someone in a Calabrian town. READ  

Italian Ebola patient in 'stable' condition
The doctor is being treated at Rome’s Lazzaro Spallanzani Institute. Photo: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP

Italian Ebola patient in 'stable' condition

An Italian doctor battling the deadly Ebola virus is in a “stable” condition, Italian media reported. READ  

Italian police to use Predator drones
One of the Air Force's two drone models can reach speeds of 445km an hour. Predator drone photo: Shutterstock

Italian police to use Predator drones

Italian police agreed on Wednesday to start using drones as a way of monitoring major events and responding to natural disasters, while national media said they could also be used during protests. READ  

Murdered waiter's family to get lifetime pension
The attack happened in central Pisa. Photo: Argenberg

Murdered waiter's family to get lifetime pension

Authorities in Pisa will pay a lifetime pension to the family of a Bangladeshi waiter, who was murdered as he made his way home from work earlier this year. READ  

Former Ferrari boss named new Alitalia chief
Luca Cordero di Montezemolo is the new head of Alitalia. Photo: Miguel Medina

Former Ferrari boss named new Alitalia chief

The former long-time head of Ferrari, Luca Cordero di Montezemolo, was on Wednesday officially named as the head of Italy's national carrier Alitalia. READ  

ArcelorMittal bids for scandal-hit steel plant
Ilva factory workers protest outside the plant in 2012. Photo: Donato Fasano/AFP

ArcelorMittal bids for scandal-hit steel plant

ArcelorMittal has teamed up with Italy's Marcegaglia to bid for Ilva, a loss-making Italian steel plant at the centre of a major environmental scandal, the target company confirmed on Wednesday. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
National
Russian craft takes Italian astronaut to space
National
Russian fined €20,000 for defacing Colosseum
National
Mafia use tigers and parrots to wield power
National
Top ten: Italy's weirdest place names
National
Mafia 'cashes in' on Sicily's migrant influx
National
Dozens of foreigners vie for €1 homes in Sicily
Sponsored Article
Ever wanted to try out home exchange?
International
Italy: Crimean Russians won't get visas from us
National
Wild bears spark fear in Italy's north
National
Italy's immigration crisis moves to the streets
Society
Italy under pressure over Roma camps squalor
International
VIDEO: Greenpeace activist injured in Canary Islands oil clash
Vatican
Topless feminists target 'political' Pope
Education
Italy's 'rigid' education system stifles job market
Education
Italians speak better English than the French
Education
How Turin is defying Italian austerity
Travel
Top ten: great late autumn escapes in Italy
National
Quake experts cleared in 'science on trial' case
Culture
10 things you should never say to an Italian
Travel
Italy tops world favourite destination list
Gallery
Top 10: The best Italian proverbs
Opinion
Why foreigners in Italy are happier than Italians
Opinion
'Forget the baby bonus, we need investment'
National
UN fears for migrants as Italy ends rescue mission
Politics
Quiz: How well do you know Italian politics?
Culture
Ten Rome baristas who brighten your day
Business & Money
Italy bows to EU pressure over budget
Travel
Ten of the best students bars in Rome
National
'Italy is the real sick man of Europe'
Society
Semi-clad tourists dance in priceless fountain
National
Singing nun picks Like a Virgin for debut album
National
Where's the best place to live in Italy?
National
Amorous Italian couple get stuck in frolic at sea
Culture
Test your Italian history with The Local's quiz
Travel
Top ten: Travel warnings for Italy
International
Revealed: The cost of home comforts in Italy
Health
Nurse 'killed 38 patients for being annoying'
Culture
Breaking Balsamic: See US writer's potent parody
Opinion
Is Italy a desirable place for foreigners to work?
Culture
Top ten: Things Italian mothers say
Society
Mayors vow to defy gay marriage registration ban
Travel
How well do you know Italy's geography?
National
Ten Italian 'false friends' you need to watch out for
International
Italian student tipped to win British X-Factor
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

522
jobs available
The Local Spain is hiring!
The Local is seeking a new editor for our site in Spain to join our growing team of internationally-minded, driven, ambitious and clued-up journalists.
Details and how to apply