More than 110 migrants drifting in the Mediterranean on two makeshift boats were rescued on Thursday in separate operations by a ship chartered by a French charity, an AFP reporter onboard said.
"I love you all!" said one of the migrants when the Ocean Viking -- chartered by French aid group SOS-Mediterranee -- arrived at their boat in the waters around 100 kilometres (62 miles) from the Italian island of Lampedusa.
There were 67 people onboard their grey boat, mainly men and youths from Bangladesh and Morocco.
The boat had been spotted by the plane Moon Bird, of fellow migrant resue charity Sea-Watch, SOS-Mediterranee said.
Earlier in the day, the ship rescued 51 migrants on a blue wooden boat including one woman and five children, mainly of Pakistani and Eritrean nationality.