People prepare to disembark from a boat at the Brindisi harbor, southern Italy, following rescue operations of migrants off the coasts of Sicily on September 15, 2014. (AFP/DFF)
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The European Union is weighing whether to send immigration officers abroad to assess the needs of would-be migrants as increasing numbers of people try to reach the EU illegally.EU migration spokeswoman Natasha Bertaud said Friday that "the plan is perhaps to have immigration officers in some countries". The officers could establish what legal avenues of migration might be open for some people and whether they need urgent help.More than 276,000 migrants entered the EU illegally last year, and conflict-torn Libya is the major jumping off point for people aiming to reach southern Europe.
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