51 migrants rescued from grounded sailboat off Italy


MILAN (AP) — Italian news agency ANSA says that 51 Kurdish migrants, including six women and four children, have been rescued on a sailboat off the southern Calabria region.

ANSA reported Thursday the sailboat grounded just offshore, and the shouts of the stranded migrants woke residents in the town of Melissa.

Residents brought them to safety using a dinghy from a nearby hotel, and the hotel staff provided blankets and a place to change and warm themselves by a stove. The rescued included a newborn. The migrants were to be transferred later to a nearby processing center.

Italy has refused to allow NGO ships that rescue migrants at sea to access its ports, forcing migrants to find new routes to reach Europe.

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