Smugglers Fire Shots in Migrant Rescue Operation

Added danger for rescue teams.

Smugglers Fire Shots in Migrant Rescue Operation

People smugglers fired several shots on Monday to recover a wooden boat after the migrants it was carrying were rescued some 60 NM from Libya. The search and rescue operation was carried out by an Italian tugboat and Icelandic Coast Guard vessel Týrdeployed by Frontex.

Týr, already carrying 342 migrants from an earlier rescue operation, was called to assist the tugboat in another rescue. After most of the 250 people aboard the second migrant vessel were transferred to the tugboat, a speedboat approached. Its crew fired several shots into the air and then assailants sped away with the empty migrant boat.

This is the second time this year when armed smugglers took back a vessel used to transport migrants following a rescue operation in the Central Mediterranean.

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