Somalia‘s government said on Monday that about 200 or more migrants, that were making the dangerous route from Libya to Italy, probably died while crossing the Mediterranean Sea while trying reach Europe, when the boat they were on capsized after leaving the Egyptian coast, making them drown.
The President of Italy, Sergio Mattarella, confirmed the tragedy that happened during the weekend, saying that Europe faced ‘‘yet another tragedy in the Mediterranean in which, it seems, several hundred people have died.’’
The president, prime minister and speaker of parliament said, at first, that 400 migrants, mostly Somalis, drowned. But the Somali information minister later said that the number it is probably 200 and still other reports after said even fewer had drowned.
Since the boat capsized at night in the open sea, it is hard to get clear information
Only 41 people survived, from Ethiopia, Somalia, Sudan, and Egypt, and they say they were transferred to another vessel when it sank in the middle of the night.
“Two hundred and forty of us set off from Libya but then the traffickers made us get on to a bigger wooden boat around 30m in length that already had at least 300 people in it,” said Abdul Kadir one of the survivors according to a report.
The reports of the drownings circulated among families and on social media but it could not be confirmed by coast guard authorities in Italy, Greece, Libya, and Egypt.
President Mattarella said that Europe needed to reflect in the face of “yet another tragedy in the Mediterranean in which, it seems, several hundred people have died”.
The report of the sinking corresponded to the shipwreck of a fishing boat that happened one year ago, that had about 800 migrants on board that drowned off the Libyan coast when the boat they were traveling in collided with a mercantile vessel that was attempting to rescue them. Only 28 people survived.
Source: The Washington Post