On patrol with Italy's Navy: What happens to migrants found at sea?
19 June 2014 Last updated at 17:16 BST
The BBC's Matthew Price has been behind-the scenes on the Bergamini, part of the Italian navy's Mare Nostrum (Our Sea) operation, which patrols the seas in the search for migrant boats.
The frigate is under orders to save lives - whether boats are in trouble or not, they will try to intercept them and pick up the passengers.
Migrants are taken through a series of important steps once they are on board, including passing through a decontamination zone.
Read more: Inside Europe Blog