Italy says migrant boat capsized, second in two days

A migrant boat capsized in the Mediterranean on Thursday and about 100 of its passengers have been rescued while the number of dead is unknown, officials said. It was the second shipwreck in two days as

A migrant boat capsized in the Mediterranean on Thursday and about 100 of its passengers have been rescued while the number of dead is unknown, officials said.

It was the second shipwreck in two days as sea crossings accelerate amid good weather. Five people were confirmed to have died when a large fishing boat flipped over in the sea on Wednesday.

Europe’s worst immigration crisis since World War Two has led to more than 8,000 deaths in 2-1/2 years, the International Organization for Migration estimates.

Boat arrivals in Italy have risen sharply this week amid warm weather and calm seas, and about 20 rescue operations are currently under way, a coastguard spokesman said.

Based on initial pictures from the aircraft that spotted the overturned boat, between 20 and 30 people are feared to have died in the shipwreck, a spokesman for European Union’s Sophia naval mission said.

Italy’s coastguard declined to estimate how many may have died. “We don’t know how many people were on board,” the coastguard spokesman said.

Separately, the non-profit organisation Sea-Watch, which has a rescue ship in the area, said it was about to recover one body from the sea following a shipwreck and that it had picked up 115 migrants from a rubber boat.

“Aboard the boats are many Syrian and Iraqi people,” Sea-Watch said on Facebook, adding that the EU deal to send migrants back to Turkey from Greece is forcing refugees to travel from North Africa to Europe.

Most migrants who come to Italy by boat hail from Africa.

The coastguard has coordinated the rescue of around 900 migrants in seven different operations on Thursday. That brings the total of migrants who have been rescued since Monday to more than 7,000.

Through Tuesday, total sea arrivals in Italy had fallen by 9 percent this year to 37,743, according to the Interior Ministry. The country’s migrant shelters are under pressure to house 115,507 migrants, about twice as many as two years ago.

Some 650 migrants and the five dead bodies picked up by the Italian navy docked at the Sicilian city of Porto Empedocle, where they will receive food and clothing. Officials will try to identify them before sending them to shelters.

Reuters: (Reporting by Steve Scherer; Editing by Isla Binnie and Tom Heneghan)

 

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4 COMMENTS
  • k.tewolde May 27, 2016

    The carnage continues and the perpetrators go about their every day business with no accountability.And some even get rewarded for it.There ought to be a law!

  • Keren May 27, 2016

    Is it true that the so called “Special Envoy of the President and Permanent Representative of Eritrea to the UN, Ambassador Girma Asmerom” is dying of pancreatic cancer. Medical sources from the Higdef camp indicated that he has only 8 months to live.
    Girma learned later while he was in Addis how worthless and useless the mission of the Ghedli Romantics was but chose to die as a die hard mule of Issaias Afewerki to the end. Recently Issaias gave him a new title “Special Envoy of the President” just to make him feel good as Girma goes thru the horrific chemotherapy before his imminent death ….
    At one time Girma was a happy behere Amice Ethiopian who represented her in international matches a member of the Ethiopian National Football Team. This is decades ago before he became an Abeed/servant of Issaias and the Gulf Arabs.

    • Berhe Tensea May 30, 2016

      Keren,
      Yes the so called special envoy may be suffering from that decease, because most of Iseyas puppets or officials alcohol addicts. They have mainly liver decease, as Isu supplies them with dozens of hard liquor every week.
      Most of the generals and ministers who are ashamed of their weakness self medicate alcohol to sleep.
      These paralyzed are called Red Indians, by many Asmarinos.
      The alcohol addicts, becoming sleep walking zombies who even fail to wake up to the many people’s suffering
      by PFDJ/Isu/ and his Rashaida friends.
      People need to wake up and smell the coffee, and and say enough is enough and stop the pain.

  • Berhe Tensea May 30, 2016

    The EU must declare that it will not accept and rescue refugees,. It must stop any kind rescue missions, and this may deter the influx of refugees mostly Eritreans from drowning.
    Eritreans are choosing extreme danger than to confront the dictator, the solution is in our hands, use it or die worse than a slave or an animal.

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