Tripoli, Jul 5 (IANS): The International Organization for Migration (IOM) said that 633 illegal migrants were returned to Libya after being rescued off the country's coast last week.
"In the period of June 26-July 2, a total of 633 migrants have been disembarked back on Libyan shores," Xinhua news agency quoted the IOM as saying in a statement late Monday.
A total of 9,973 illegal migrants have been rescued and returned to Libya so far in 2022, including 678 women and 362 minors, it added.
The UN agency also said that 166 illegal migrants died and 611 others went missing this year.
In 2021, a total of 32,425 illegal migrants were rescued and returned to Libya, while 662 died and 891 others went missing off the country's coast on the Central Mediterranean route, the IOM revealed.
Libya has been suffering insecurity and chaos since the fall of the late leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, making the North African country a preferred point of departure for illegal migrants who want to cross the Mediterranean Sea to European shores.