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Italian authorities have recovered the bodies of 26 teenage girls from the Mediterranean Sea. According to CNN, the girls, aged 14-18, were reportedly trying to escape Niger and Nigeria via a route to Europe from Libya over the weekend.

Coroners began performing autopsies on Tuesday (November 7) to determine if the girls were tortured or sexually abused. According to police, many of the bodies were found near a mostly submerged rubber dinghy with other bodies floating in close proximity. Survivors who clung to the boat were also rescued.

The recovery happened during one of four rescues that took place over the weekend. Italian police told CNN that more than 400 migrants were rescued during the missions, including 90 women (eight of them pregnant), 52 children, and a one-week-old baby.

As CNN reports, Libya, which is separated from Italy by the Mediterranean Sea, is known as a refuge location for migrants fleeing war, persecution, and impoverished nations. But it’s also a hot spot for human trafficking, “whose network of smuggling operations have gone widely unchecked due to Libya’s lack of effective central governance.”

Italian police reportedly arrested two men accused with human smuggling on Monday, though they aren’t believed to be connected with the girls.

Following an agreement between the Italian interior minister, the Tripoli government, and various Libyan villages, Italy began offering training to the Libyan Tripoli Coast Guard in August in an effort to fight human trafficking.

According to the International Organization for Migration, a total of 2,639 migrants have died on the central Mediterranean route this year.