UN agency investigating transfer of 108 migrants to Libya

The UN refugee agency says it is looking into possible violations of international law involving the transport to Libya of 108 migrants rescued at sea by an Italian-flagged mercantile ship.

Responding to the suspicions, Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said on Facebook on Tuesday that the Italian coast guard was not involved in the rescue, which was coordinated by the Libyan coast guard.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees in Italy said on Twitter that Libya is not a secure port, making such a transfer a violation of international law.

An Italian lawmaker aboard an NGO rescue ship, Nicola Frantoianni said on Facebook that they had proof that the ship, Asso Ventotto, was taking the migrants to Libya, calling it "a very serious precedent" if ordered by the Italian coast guard.

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