ROME : More than 600 migrants from Eritrea, Pakistan, Syria and other countries landed on Italian shores on three boats between Monday night and Tuesday, coast guards said. Most of the thousands of economic migrants and refugees who have landed in Italy in recent months have landed in Libya from other parts of Africa. Some 350 migrants - many of them from Egypt and Syria - arrived on four boats in Sicily on Monday.

Calmer weather conditions and growing unrest in north Africa have led to a surge in migrant arrivals in recent weeks.

Italy’s interior ministry said 24,277 migrants landed in Italy in the 12-month period between August 1, 2012 and August 10, 2013.