Migrant Death Toll Rises on Sea Route to Italy

Posted by Eric Haun
Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Migrants arriving on boats in southern Italy say 81 other people travelling with them have died or gone missing during their sea journeys from north Africa, the UN refugee agency said on Wednesday.

A group of 27 migrants picked up on Tuesday by Italy's naval rescue mission and brought to the town of Catania said there had been 75 other people on their boat, who were feared drowned, the UNHCR said in a statement.

Other migrants arriving in Sicily's Porto Empedocle said two of the party they travelled with had died and four had disappeared.

Authorities said the death toll on another packed fishing boat, discovered by an Italian rescue mission on Monday, had reached 45. The victims are believed to have suffocated.

All those found dead on Monday by the "Mare Nostrum" or "Our Sea" naval operation were men from Subsaharan Africa, the U.N. said.

The UNHCR says around 500 migrants have died so far this year in the Mediterranean. Many were fleeing war in Syria, forced conscription in Eritrea, or poverty in other countries in Africa.

Italy's navy tweeted that Mare Nostrum had rescued 236 migrants, including 35 women and 54 minors, on Wednesday.

Southern Italy has long attracted flows of seaborne migrants, and calm weather has contributed to a surge over recent weeks.

The number reaching Italy this year, many of whom pay a trafficker more than $1,000 for the trip, has already matched the annual record of 62,000 set in 2011 during the Arab Spring uprisings.

Mare Nostrum costs around 9 million euros ($12.3 million) a month, and Italy has called for more help from the European Union. The EU said on Monday it was making 4 million euros of emergency funding available to Italy.

The influx of migrants has revived support for Italy's anti-immigration Northern League party, whose leader Matteo Salvini called on Prime Minister Matteo Renzi and Interior Minister Angelino Alfano to resign over the issue on Wednesday.

"The jackets of the people in power are covered with more and more blood, the cemeteries are filling up, the Italians' pockets are emptying," Salvini wrote on Facebook.

($1 = 0.7331 Euros)

(Reporting by Isla Binnie; additional reporting by Wladimiro Pantaleone in Sicily; editing by Andrew Roche)

 

Maritime Reporter June 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

News

Meyer Turku Wins TUI Cruises Order for 2 Ships

TUI Cruises GmbH and Meyer Turku Oy signed an agreement for two cruise ships. This order further strengthens the order book of the shipyard, which contains now a high work load until the year 2020.

Oranjewerf Ship Repair becomes Damen Shiprepair Oranjewerf

On 1 July 2015, Oranjewerf Ship Repair, which joined Damen Shipyards Group in 1989, will officially change its name to Damen Shiprepair Oranjewerf. This name

Shell Steps Closer to Arctic Drilling

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service authorized the nonlethal, incidental, and unintentional take of small numbers of polar bears and Pacific walrus that result

Coast Guard

Cargoship Disabled and Grounded in Dardanelles

General cargo vessel Ibrahim Konan  (7,618 dwt, built 2008) today (July 1) suffered rudder failure and ran aground in Dardanelles in front of Eceabat in Turkey,

Coast Guard Monitoring Rocket Debris off US

The U.S. Coast Guard informs it is working with SpaceX and partner agencies to monitor the debris field of the exploded Falcon 9 rocket in the Atlantic Ocean more

Shell Rig Departs for Arctic Despite Protest

U.S. Coast Guard and police boats cleared a way through protesters in kayaks at a Seattle-area port on Tuesday so a drilling ship could head for the Arctic on behalf of Royal Dutch Shell.

Maritime Safety

China Says Indian Ocean Not Backyard of India

The perception that Indian Ocean is India's "backyard" may result in clashes, Chinese military officials and experts have cautioned.    The Indian Ocean cannot

Motion Compensation Solution for Solan Field

Ampelmann provides access solution for commissioning of the Solan project in West of Shetland   Motion compensated access solutions developer Ampelmann informs

Pirates and Hold-ups: Crime Strikes Venezuela's Oil Industry

When night falls over western Venezuela, armed gangs known as "pirates" sometimes ride boats into muggy Lake Maracaibo to steal equipment from oil wells.   In the country's Paraguana peninsula,

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Offshore Oil Pipelines Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1269 sec (8 req/sec)