Migrant strapped under a lorry for 400 kilometres rescued in Italy

Italian police said Tuesday they rescued a migrant who travelled for 400 kilometres on a motorway strapped underneath a lorry.

The 20-year-old Afghan was intercepted on Monday about 65 kilometres south-east of Rome. He appeared exhausted but is now well, police spokesman Alessandro Ciotti told dpa.

Authorities were alerted by a driver. "As he overtook the lorry, he saw a couple of feet poking from the side, so he called us," the spokesman said.

After a check-up in hospital, the migrant was taken to a migration office for identification, police said. According to the ANSA news agency, he refused to claim asylum, so he will be repatriated.

The truck the migrant hid under came from Turkey and landed at the Italian port of Brindisi. ANSA said it was headed to Spain and its two drivers were seemingly unaware of carrying an extra passenger.

Since border controls were tightened earlier this year along the so-called Balkan route, Italy has become the main entry point for Europe-bound migrants from Africa, the Middle East and beyond.

On Monday, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said 102,000 migrants had arrived since January 1, compared to 105,000 during the same period of 2015.

Last update: Tue, 23/08/2016 - 17:31

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