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The Latest: Austria police find 11 Iranians on freight train
 


The Latest on migration into Europe (all times local):

4:20 p.m.

Police in southern Austria say 11 Iranian migrants hoping to travel to Germany have been found among a load of fridges inside a freight train car.

A railway worker at a shunting yard in Fuernitz, near Villach on the Slovenian border, heard knocking sounds from inside the sealed car on a freight train that had arrived from Slovenia on Friday afternoon. He alerted police, who said Saturday that officers found three women, three men and five children inside.

The migrants told authorities that a smuggler had put them in the freight car near a home for refugees in Sid, Serbia on Thursday and told them the train would take them to Germany. They said they had paid the smuggler 1,000 euros ($1,125) per person.

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10:15 a.m.

The German humanitarian group Sea-Eye says its rescue ship Alan Kurdi with 65 rescued people on board is sailing toward the Italian island of Lampedusa, where it will join another ship blocked offshore.

The announcement, made late Friday, is sure to escalate tensions with Italy over its refusal to offer a safe port to NGO ships.

Another ship, the Alex operated by the Italian group Mediterranea Saving Humans, is already off Lampedusa just outside Italian territorial waters with another 40 migrants.

Sea-Eye said “we are not intimidated” by Italy’s hard-line interior minister, Matteo Salvini, “but instead head toward the nearest port of safety.” Thirty-nine claim to be minors.

The new standoffs come a week after a German rescue ship forced its way into Lampedusa’s port citing “a state of necessity.”