TUNIS, Tunisia  -- Nearly two dozen Libyan soldiers, including a colonel and other officers, have fled Libya in two small boats, taking refuge in neighboring Tunisia, this nation's official news agency said.

A person who met with some of them on Saturday says they fled rebel-held Misrata, arriving at Ketf port, near Ben Guerdane on the Tunisian border and that the group turned over its weapons to the Tunisian army. The person spoke on condition of anonymity for security reasons.

Tunisia's official TAP news agency said the 22 Libyan soldiers, many ranking officers, arrived Friday in boats that also carried a dozen civilians, two with bullet wounds.

On May 15, three dissident officers from Moammar Gadhafi's army also reached Tunisia by boat.

Thousands of people fleeing fighting in Libya have taken refuge in Tunisia.