A woman was found dead Thursday on a boat in distress during a rescue operation at sea in eastern Libya, said the association SOS Mediterranean.
In total, some 1,500 migrants were rescued in three days during some 15 operations in international waters off Libya.
The victim was found in an inflatable boat with 108 passengers, including 16 women and 34 miners, mostly Eritreans, rescued by the Aquarius ship chartered by SOS Mediterranean.
Canoe passengers told MSF medical staff on board Aquarius that the deceased had died just before leaving the Libyan coast as a result of childbirth.
The young woman gave birth a few days earlier to a stillborn child, according to these witnesses.
The Aquarius carried out two other operations on Wednesday, including one in collaboration with a Spanish military ship, which saved 279 people, including around 100 women and children.
First transported to Aquarius , these survivors were transhipped in the night of Wednesday to Thursday aboard the ship Diciotti of the Italian Coast Guard.
The relief coordination center in Rome said Wednesday night that 1100 others had been rescued the previous day in the Mediterranean in 11 separate operations.
Some 114,600 migrants have landed since January 1 on the Italian coast, a figure down by nearly 32% compared to the same period last year, according to the Interior Ministry.
The decline occurred in the second half of the year with arrivals rising from 11,500 in July (against 23,500 in July 2016) to 5900 in October (against 27,300 a year earlier).
In a report released Thursday, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) announced that migration through the eastern Mediterranean, via Turkey, increased in the third quarter, affecting 3,300 people in July, 4,500 in August and 6600 in September.
As of 20 November, UNHCR estimates that as many as 3,000 people are dead or missing at sea, along with 57 other road deaths in Europe or Europe’s borders.