Bodies recovered during rescue operation by the Irish Navy

Nearly 300 migrants were rescued from two rubber vessels

Bodies recovered during rescue operation by the Irish Navy

Image: Flickr/Irish Defence Forces

The LÉ William Butler Yeats has recovered three people from the water during a rescue operation in the Mediterranean.

The ship assisted in operations following a request from the Italian Maritime Rescue Co-Ordination Centre.

The LÉ William Butler Yeats located and rescued 285 migrants from two rubber vessels during two search and rescue operations 44 kilometres north-west of Tripoli.

The Defence Forces say during the course of the second operation, three people were declared dead.

Image: Flickr/Irish Defence Forces

Their bodies are onboard the Irish vessel.

The first operation began at 10:12am and 146 migrants were taken onboard by 12:28pm.

The second rescue operation started at 1:39pm and 139 migrants - plus the three deceased - were onboard by 3:25pm.

The migrants are now receiving food, water and medical treatment where required.

The LÉ William Butler Yeats remains in the area, awaiting further direction from the Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre.