Rome (AFP): Around one thousand people were rescued from unseaworthy vessels in the Mediterranean on Friday, while one dead body was recovered, the Italian coastguard said in a statement.
The migrants, who were found aboard six inflatable and three wooden boats, were rescued in operations throughout the day, notably by two coastguard ships.
The dead body was found on one of the inflatable boats.
According to the United Nations, more than 5,000 people died last year in attempts to cross the Mediterranean and reach Europe, most of them after embarking from the Libyan coast after paying people smugglers.
This was the highest annual toll on record.
Unlike previous years, winter has not brought an end to the migrant arrivals, just a reduction in the numbers.