GENEVA -- The United Nations refugee agency says some 150 bodies have been recovered from the wreck of a ship that capsized off Tunisia carrying migrants fleeing the conflict in Libya.

UNHCR spokesman Adrian Edwards says "we know that many women and children are among the 150."

The Geneva-based agency says at least 578 of the estimated 850 people on board survived the sinking Wednesday.

Edwards said Friday that survivors are being taken to refugee camps where they will receive counseling and assistance.

He says the incident "appears to be one of the worst and the deadliest incidents in the Mediterranean so far this year."