18 Sudanese migrants drowned in the Mediterranean on their way to Europe on April 9. The boat had 20 migrants on board; two passengers survived and only four out of the 18 bodies were recovered. A boat with 90 migrants on board also sank last week, some of whom were Sudanese, are expected to emerge amongst the bodies that have yet to be found.
Human traffickers have taken advantage of Libya’s civil war and lack of state authority in recent years. Having smuggled migrants across Libya’s borders, the traffickers put the migrants in unstable rubber dinghies and set them off on a perilous journey by way of the Mediterranean.
The International Organization for Migration said at least 192 migrants drowned on the central Mediterranean route in the first two months of 2022.
More than 2,930 migrants were intercepted and returned to Libya. Upon return, they are transferred to government-run detention centres, where abuses and ill-treatment are rife.
Large numbers of migrants have been victims of human trafficking groups who detain them, torture them, and hold them hostage for ransom.