Thirty-four migrants including women and a small child who were rescued by a German sailboat have been successfully taken aboard a humanitarian hip in international waters north of Libya despite a thunderstorm.

The people were transferred Monday from the 14-meter sailboat Josefa run by the group Resqship to the much larger and stable Ocean Viking, a Norwegian-flagged ship run jointly by SOS Mediterranee and Doctors Without Borders.

The transfer happened near the Bouri oil fields some 65 nautical miles from the Libyan coast after Josefa declared a state of emergency.

An Associated Press journalist aboard the Ocean Viking witnessed the operation.

The 22 men, six women and a toddler had been saved by the Josefa from a flimsy rubber boat with a broken engine earlier Monday.

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