Posted: May 12, 2014 7:42 AM
Updated: May 12, 2014 7:42 AM
ROME (AP) Officials say the Italian Navy and Coast Guard are rushing to rescue migrants whose boat reportedly capsized in the Mediterranean, some 100 miles (160 kilometers) south of the Italian island of Lampedusa.
The navy said two naval vessels and a helicopter were en-route to the scene, just north of Libyan waters, on Monday. Italian news reports said some 400 migrants were aboard the boat and so far about 200 have been rescued. The fate of the other passengers was not immediately clear. Nationalities were not immediately reported.
In the past week alone, more than 4,000 migrants have reached Italy's shores, arriving in smugglers' boats. Many of the boats set out from Libya's loosely patrolled coast with migrants that are fleeing wars or hardship in Syria, Eritrea and elsewhere.