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World Fifteen people drown in latest shipwreck tragedy off Libya

23:46  28 february  2021
23:46  28 february  2021 Source:   aljazeera.com

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At least 74 people drowned on Thursday when a rubber raft carrying migrants sank off the coast of Libya , the latest in a series of disasters in the world’s deadliest sea crossing, according to a United Nations agency. 1. And at least 900 people have drowned in the Mediterranean while trying to reach Europe this year, some because of delayed rescue missions, the agency said. More than 11,000 others rescued or intercepted at sea have been returned to Libya , putting them at risk of human rights abuses, including detention, abuse, trafficking and exploitation, according to the International Organization for Migration.

This shipwreck is the latest in a series of recent tragedies involving migrants in the Mediterranean, the IOM said. The organization said there have been at least eight shipwrecks in the Central Mediterranean since the beginning of October. At least 900 people have drowned in the Mediterranean In the years since the 2011 uprising that ousted and killed longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi, Libya has emerged as a launching off points for migrants from African and the Middle East hoping to get to Europe from Africa and the Middle East. Smugglers often pack desperate families onto shoddy rubber boats

At least 15 people drowned when their boat capsized off Libya, the second shipwreck in just more than a week involving people undertaking a dangerous sea journey in the hope of seeking a better life in Europe.

a large ship in a body of water: Safa Msehli, a spokesman for the International Organization for Migration, said the dead were on a rubber boat carrying at least 110 people, who embarked from theLibyan coastal town of Zawiya on Friday [File: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP] © The IOM says at least 20,000 migrants died since 2014 while trying to reach Europe crossing the Medi... Safa Msehli, a spokesman for the International Organization for Migration, said the dead were on a rubber boat carrying at least 110 people, who embarked from theLibyan coastal town of Zawiya on Friday [File: Alberto Pizzoli/AFP]

Safa Msehli, a spokeswoman for the International Organization for Migration (IOM), said on Sunday the dead were on a rubber boat carrying at least 110 people, who had embarked from the Libyan coastal town of Zawiya on Friday.

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Mediterranean tragedy : 150 migrants drown in shipwreck off Libya coast. The International Rescue Committee said the tragedy was a stark reminder of the humanitarian crisis emerging out of Libya and of the urgent need for search and rescue missions to be resumed in the Mediterranean. Ayoub Gassim, a spokesman for Libya 's coast guard, told The Associated Press that two boats carrying around 300 migrants capsized around 120 kilometers (75 miles) east of the capital, Tripoli.

The latest tragedy happened soon after the boat had set sail from the Libyan town of al Khoms, some 120km east of Tripoli. The UNHCR earlier said it understood as many as 150 people were missing and 150 people had been rescued by local fishermen and returned to Libya by coastguards. Charlie Yaxley of the UNHCR said he was concerned the survivors could be taken to two detention centres where "there's insufficient food, water, unsanitary conditions [and] widespread reports of human rights violations taking place". Earlier this month, 40 migrants were killed after a detention centre on the outskirts of Tripoli was hit in

The boat started to sink early on Sunday and the Libyan coastguard managed to rescue at least 95 people, including two children, she said.

“Tragedies and avoidable loss of life continue as a policy of silence and inaction persists,” she said in a Twitter post.

Msehli said many of the survivors suffered burns from engine fuel, and hypothermia, with some taken to hospital.

Sunday’s shipwreck was the latest along the so-called Central Mediterranean migration route. On Wednesday, international agencies said in a joint statement at least 41 people had drowned when their boat capsized off Libya on February 20.

On Saturday, German charity Sea-Watch said it had saved nearly 150 people off the Libyan coast in two operations.

Libya has become the major transit point for people hoping to reach Europe, after the North African country plunged into a bloody conflict following a NATO-backed uprising that toppled and killed longtime leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

Smugglers often pack desperate families into ill-equipped rubber boats that stall and founder in the Mediterranean Sea.

According to the IOM, more than 20,000 people have died in the Mediterranean since 2014.

International agencies have also frequently denounced the return to Libya of people intercepted at sea due to the chaotic situation in the country and poor conditions in detention centres.

“At least 3,700 men, women, and children, were returned to (Libya) this year,” the IOM said on Friday.

“Most were taken to detention, where already dire conditions continue to worsen.”

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