The government said today that it is setting up facilities for the medical treatment of people evacuated from Libya on ships in view of the many hours they have spent travelling in heavy seas.

Some passengers were crowded onto the ships for more than a day before finally casting off for their tough trip to Malta.

It is also working with the hotel industry to provide temporary accommodation until the rescued workers go on to their home countries.

The government expressed its appreciation for the support and co-operation by all entities involved.

It said that efforts to repatriate all Maltese wishing to return were also continuing.

Meanwhile, sources said an Air Malta flight due to go to Tripoli this evening has been cancelled because of the closure of Tripoli airport. The airport was also closed in the evening of the past two days because of congestion.

However, another Air Malta flight operated normally to Tripoli this morning.

Malta was known as the Nurse of the Mediterranean in the First World War as hundreds of injured soldiers were evacuated to the Island during the Gallipoli campaign.

However, with the island now serving as a staging point for evacuations by air, the description given to Malta in the Second World War - the unsinkable aircraft carrier - has also been recalled.

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