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40 missing in Italy migrant boat mishap – UN



Boat Mishap: Bago condoles with victims' families

According to the UN, over 40 people are missing when a migrant boat overturned off the Italian island of Lampedusa.

According to UNHCR spokesperson in Italy Chiara Cardoletti, the ship mishap occurred on Thursday and at least one newborn baby is among those missing.

According to Flavio Di Giacomo, a spokesman for the UN migration organization IOM, the ship left Sfax in Tunisia with 46 migrants from Cameroon, Burkina Faso, and Ivory Coast.

He stated that the boat capsized due to strong winds and high waves. He said “Some survivors were taken to Lampedusa and others were brought back to Tunisia”.

“Among those missing were seven women and a minor. The survivors are all adult men”, he added.

“We have noticed more arrivals of migrants from sub-Saharan Africa than Tunisians” via the Tunisian route since November, he said.


Furthermore, he explained this was due to people from sub-Saharan Africa fleeing discrimination in Tunisia.

“It is unacceptable to continue counting the dead at Europe’s gates,” Cardoletti wrote on Twitter, alluding to tragic migrant boat disasters in Italy, Greece, and Spain.

“A coordinated and shared rescue mechanism at sea between states is now also a matter of conscience.”

Di Giacomo also emphasized the brittleness of the poorly welded boats, which sank at the first sign of trouble.


“We are therefore not aware of certain shipwrecks,” he said, calling for “patrols of European ships to monitor the Tunisian route as well as the Libyan route, otherwise we will witness a disaster this summer.”

Lampedusa, located around 145 kilometers (90 miles) from the Tunisian coast, is one of the main entry locations for migrants crossing the Mediterranean.

According to the UNHCR, more than 46,000 migrants landed there last year, out of a total of 105,000 in Italy.

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