LAMPEDUSA, ITALY - The Italian coastguard rescued 305 people, including 17 women and six minors, from a small, overcrowded boat which got into trouble near the Italian island of Lampedusa Friday.

Hundreds of people rescued by three charity boats in recent times are also waiting for a safe port in the region to take them in, with Geo Barents, operated by charity Doctors without Borders, saying it had over 430 people on board.