Libya's coast guard intercepts 57 Europe-bound migrants

CAIRO (AP) — Libya's coast guard says it intercepted 57 Europe-bound migrants off the country's Mediterranean coast.

Spokesman Ayoub Gassim says that a wooden boat carrying 53 Ethiopian migrants, including 17 women and nine children, and four Egyptian migrants was stopped on Saturday off the coastal town of Zawiya. The town is about 48 kilometers, or 30 miles, west of the capital, Tripoli.

He says the migrants were given humanitarian and medical assistance before being taken to a detention center in Zawiya.

Libya's coast guard says it has intercepted 577 migrants at sea so far in August.

Libya slid into chaos after the 2011 uprising that toppled and killed Moammar Gadhafi. It has emerged as a major transit point for migrants fleeing war and poverty in Africa and the Middle East to Europe.