World

EU launches navy operation against migrant traffickers in the Mediterranean Sea to stop surge

  • The Belgian Navy Vessel Godetia breaks waves during a migrants search and rescue mission in the mediterranean sea off the Sicilian coasts, Italy, Sunday, June 21, 2015. The Godetia Belgian Navy Vessel is among a EU Navy Vessels fleet taking part in the Triton migrant rescue operations. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

    The Belgian Navy Vessel Godetia breaks waves during a migrants search and rescue mission in the mediterranean sea off the Sicilian coasts, Italy, Sunday, June 21, 2015. The Godetia Belgian Navy Vessel is among a EU Navy Vessels fleet taking part in the Triton migrant rescue operations. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)  (The Associated Press)

  • Sailor First Class Michael Christiaens looks the skyline through a glass window of the command deck of the Belgian Navy Vessel Godetia breaks during a migrants search and rescue mission in the mediterranean sea off the Sicilian coasts, Italy, Sunday, June 21, 2015. The Godetia Belgian Navy Vessel is among a EU Navy Vessels fleet taking part in the Triton migrant rescue operations. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)

    Sailor First Class Michael Christiaens looks the skyline through a glass window of the command deck of the Belgian Navy Vessel Godetia breaks during a migrants search and rescue mission in the mediterranean sea off the Sicilian coasts, Italy, Sunday, June 21, 2015. The Godetia Belgian Navy Vessel is among a EU Navy Vessels fleet taking part in the Triton migrant rescue operations. (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)  (The Associated Press)

  • Hassen Hamza, 32, from Sudan, center, and Abraham Hilan 17, from Eritrea, left, play soccer at the Franco-Italian border in Ventimiglia, Italy, Sunday, June 21, 2015. European Union nations failed to bridge differences Tuesday, June 16 over an emergency plan to share the burden of the thousands of refugees crossing the Mediterranean Sea, while on the French-Italian border, police in riot gear forcibly removed dozens of migrants. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)

    Hassen Hamza, 32, from Sudan, center, and Abraham Hilan 17, from Eritrea, left, play soccer at the Franco-Italian border in Ventimiglia, Italy, Sunday, June 21, 2015. European Union nations failed to bridge differences Tuesday, June 16 over an emergency plan to share the burden of the thousands of refugees crossing the Mediterranean Sea, while on the French-Italian border, police in riot gear forcibly removed dozens of migrants. (AP Photo/Thibault Camus)  (The Associated Press)

The European Union has launched a naval operation to try to stop human traffickers from bringing migrants across the Mediterranean to Europe in unseaworthy boats.

More than 100,000 migrants have entered Europe so far this year, with some 2,000 dead or missing during their perilous quest to reach the continent. Dozens of boats are launched from lawless Libya each week, with Italy and Greece bearing the brunt of the surge.

The naval operation will begin operating in international waters and airspace until the EU can secure permission to enter Libyan territory.

EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said Monday "there are things that we can do ... in international waters that we can begin with already now."