European Union leaders have agreed over an action plan on Friday to help them prevent a new wave of African migrants this spring, especially from Libya, offering Tripoli more money and other assistance to beef up its frontier controls.
The bloc held a summit in Malta to discuss the future of the European bloc and ways to curb the migration crisis.
The central Mediterranean route has become one of the main gateways to Europe, with some 180,000 migrant arrivals in Italy last year.
"We have agreed on immediate operational measures that should help reduce the number of irregular migrants and save lives at the same time," said Donald Tusk, EU president.
We will train, equip and support the Libyan coast guard to stop people smugglers and increase search-and-rescue operations.
The plan includes supporting the development of local communities in Libya and providing provide adequate reception capacity and improving conditions in Libya for migrants.
Also, 200 million euros will be mobilised for the North Africa window of the fund and a priority will be given to migration-related projects concerning Libya.
TRT World’s Sarah Morice has more details from Valletta.