Migrant boats carrying over 2500 persons arrived in Lampedusa over the weekend. The boats are all believed to have departed from Libya. Improving sea conditions are thought to be responsible for the new surge in migrant boats. Italy has said it will lodge a formal diplomatic complaint with Malta over what it says was Malta’s failure to rescue a migrant boat in distress. The migrant boat in question was apparently closer to Lampedusa than to Malta, but was within the Maltese SAR zone when a distress call was made. Maltese authorities said they were unable to send their patrol boats to the boat that was in distress due to bad sea conditions. Italian coast guard boats eventually provided assistance while NATO and Armed Forces of Malta aircraft provided air surveillance.
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