Tunisia said its coastguards Saturday rescued 28 mostly sub-Saharan Africa migrants, including a baby, from a boat headed for Europe that broke down off the Kerkennah islands.
The defense ministry said the 25 sub-Saharan Africans and three Tunisians, who had set off on Thursday night, were handed over to authorities at the port of Sfax. Among them was a nine-month-old baby, the ministry added.
For all the latest headlines follow our Google News channel online or via the app.
The number of would-be migrants trying to cross to Europe from Tunisia has been on the rise since 2017, largely driven for Tunisians by economic woes in their country, almost a decade after a revolution that many had hoped would bring more significant change.
Between the start of 2020 and mid-September, more than 8,580 people have been intercepted trying to reach Europe by sea from Tunisia, including 2,104 non-Tunisians, according to interior ministry figures.
French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin held talks Friday with Tunisia’s leaders on repatriating Tunisians convicted on terrorism charges or suspected of holding extremist inclinations.
Darmanin’s visit to Tunis was scheduled some time ago but it took on new urgency following the October 29 killing of three people at a church in the southern French city of Nice, in an attack allegedly perpetrated by a Tunisian national.
Italy in August announced the start of operations to repatriate Tunisian migrants, saying it could no longer cope with the high numbers of illegal arrivals on its shores.
In just one week, nearly 600 migrants intercepted off Libya: UN
Nice attack: Tunisia and France discuss migration and 'terrorism'
Spain: one found dead aboard boat carrying 70 migrants from sub-Saharan AfricaSpanish emergency services said one migrant died on a boat carrying around 70 others that was intercepted Wednesday off Tenerife in the Canary Islands ... World News
20 migrants capsized off the coast of northern FranceAt least three people were missing and a search operation was underway after a boat carrying about 20 migrants capsized off the coast of Loon-Plage ... World News
Greece finalizes plan to build wall on border with Turkey to block migrantsGreece’s government says it has finalized plans to build a wall along its northeast border with Turkey, over concerns that migrants may try to stage ... World News