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350 migrants intercepted by Tripoli-based coast guard off western Libya shores

The Address | Benghazi – Libya

TRIPOLI – The coast guard of the proposed Government of National Accord (GNA) says it has intercepted about 350 Europe-bound migrants, including women and children, off the Mediterranean coast in the past few days, Tampa Bay Times reported.

According to the newspaper, Spokesman Ayoub Gassim says Wednesday three boats carrying 235 passengers including 20 women and two children were stopped Sunday off the coast of the western towns of Khoms and Zuwara.

“He says another boat carrying 116 passengers including 12 women and a child was stopped Monday off the coast of Zuwara.”

Gassim adds “all migrants were given humanitarian and medical aid, and were taken to a refugee camp.”

Libya has emerged as a major transit point to Europe for those fleeing poverty and civil war elsewhere in Africa and the Middle East. Traffickers have exploited Libya’s chaos following the 2011 uprising that toppled and later killed longtime ruler Moammar Gadhafi.

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