15 Muslim migrants have been arrested by the Italian police, after they threw overboard, 12 Christians, following a religious clash on a migrant boat.
The men have been charged with multiple aggravated murder, motivated by religious hate.
They are said to have come from Cote d’ivoire, Senegal, Mali and Guinea, and were among the 105 people aboard the boat that left from Libya on Tuesday.
The Christians, thrown overboard, from mainly Ghana and Nigeria, are said to have drowned.
Those who survived on the boat, said they had resisted any attempt to be thrown overboard, leading them in some cases, to form a human chain.
The Italian police said that the boat was intercepted by an Italian navy vessel, which transferred the passengers to a Panamanian-flagged ship. That ship docked in Palermo on Wednesday, after which the arrests were made.
Almost 10,000 migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean have been rescued in recent days. Italy has called for more help from the EU to handle the crisis.
Meanwhile, another migrant boat has sank while on its way from Libya to Italy.
Authorities were able to rescue four survivors, one a Ghanaian, two Nigerians, and one Nigerien. They said the boat had at least 45 people aboard.