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Nine Sudanese youths among 43 migrants drowned in Mediterranean

July 4 - 2021 TUNIS
A boat carrying migrants intercepted in the Mediterranean (File photo: Libyan Coast Guard)
A boat carrying migrants intercepted in the Mediterranean (File photo: Libyan Coast Guard)

Nine Sudanese youths are now known to have died when a boat carrying migrants attempting to reach Italy capsized off the coast of Tunisia. The youths are among at least 43 deaths related to the incident, according to statements by the Tunisian Red Crescent.

The boat carrying migrants from Sudan, Egypt, Eritrea, and Bangladesh set off from Libya’s north-west coast at Zuwara on Monday night, but reportedly capsized after it’s motor broke down.

The Tunisian Navy managed to rescue 84 people, aged between three and 40, they report. Up to 36 of these survivors could be Sudanese. Red Crescent spokesman Mongi Slim said that the survivors are now being given food and drink, while his organisation seeks a solution to house them for the mandatory COVID isolation period.

As the news of the deaths reach the victims’ families on Saturday, a pall of sadness and mourning over the Umm Dom area in Khartoum state, where most victims came from. There was also hope for the 36 Sudanese survivors in Tunisia.

Hundreds of thousands of migrants have attempted the crossing from North Africa to Europe in recent years, with more than a thousand migrants have died at sea every year for the last five years, according to UN refugee agency UNHCR.


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