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Last Updated: Monday, 30 August, 2004, 05:34 GMT 06:34 UK
Italian island holds 240 migrants
Italian coastguard officers count some of the migrants who arrived on Sunday
Some 400 undocumented migrants have arrived in the past two weeks
A 15-metre long wooden boat containing some 240 migrants has docked at the Italian island of Lampedusa after being intercepted by the Italian navy.

The majority of those aboard the vessel claim to be Palestinians. The rest say they are Bangladeshis or Iraqis.

Migrants heading for the EU illegally often end up on Lampedusa, which is nearer Tunisia than mainland Italy.

Italian leader Silvio Berlusconi is seeking to stem the tide of migrants illegally entering Italy.

He raised the issue with Libyan leader Col Muammar Gaddafi on a visit to Tripoli on Wednesday.

Map showing the location of Lampedusa
His government has mooted plans for camps to be set up to screen migrants before they arrive within the EU.

Some 400 undocumented migrants have arrived in Lampedusa in the past two weeks.

On Tuesday, the island received a record 275 people from a single vessel.

Hundreds of people, mainly from Africa and Asia, have already tried to make the journey this year.

An unknown number have drowned or died aboard the boats.




SEE ALSO:
Migrants safe after sea rescue
17 Apr 04  |  Europe
Migrant headache dogs Italy
01 Jul 03  |  Europe


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