A court official in Tunisia said on Sunday that officials have retrieved the dead bodies of 17 migrants after four boats attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Europe collapsed.
Mourad Turk, a spokesperson for the court in the Mediterranean port city of Sfax, claimed that “the homemade boats were in a horrible condition” and had set sail overnight Friday to Saturday.
“At least one infant” and a woman were among the dead, he added, fearing the death toll will grow.
Turki quotes one survivor as saying, “There were between 30 and 32 individuals on each boat.”
Sub-Saharan Africans, including Ivorians, Malians, and Somalis, made up most individuals who tried the last tragic passage, according to him.
There are many migrant boats departing from Tunisia and the neighbouring country of Libya to reach European coastlines, particularly Italy, in vessels that are barely seaworthy.
Almost twice as many migrants perished or went missing across the Mediterranean in 2021, according to the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
More and more individuals are willing to traverse the world’s deadliest migrant route, hoping to better their lives in Europe.
A migrant boat carrying over 60 people collapsed off the coast of northern Lebanon on Saturday, killing at least six individuals. One of them was a little child.
The boat was carrying approximately 60 individuals and the military reports that Lebanese naval troops could only save 48 of them.
With the Lebanese currency losing almost 90% of its value and most of its population living below the poverty line, Lebanon is in a state of extraordinary financial disaster.