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The Irish Navy has saved the lives of almost 600 people

the Lé Eithne has been operating in the Mediterranean since last month.
Jun 29th 2015, 6:00 AM 9,392 49

IRISH VESSEL LÉ Eithne has rescued 593 migrants off the coast of Libya.

The operation took place north-west of Tripoli and saw people saved from six separate vessels.

The groups rescued had been attempting to travel on inflatable crafts.

The operation started at 4am yesterday, when 101 migrants were first taken from a rubber craft. This was followed quickly by five more consecutive rescue operations – the last of which came to an end at 1pm Irish time.

The 593 migrants were made up of 496 men, 92 women and 5 children.

The officials on board LÉ Eithne are now awaiting instruction from the Italian Maritime Rescue Co-Ordination Centre for their next task.

Work to date

To date, the ship has rescued more than 2,000 individuals.

Among the 2,136 rescued are 1,624 men, 346 women and 166 children.

It has been providing assistance in the region since leaving Ireland on 16 May from the Naval Service Headquarters in Haulbowline, Cork.

Humanitarian search and rescue operations have been underway in the Mediterranean region since 28 May.

The Lé Eithne is set to be recalled next month the Defence Forces have said, although it will be replaced by another Irish vessel which shall remain in the region for a further six months.

Read: LÉ Eithne to be recalled from Mediterranean in a month’s time

Also: Video: Hundreds of rescued migrants aboard Irish ship arrive in Italy

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Michael Sheils McNamee

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