Six dead and more than 50 rescued after boat carrying migrants sinks in Channel
A boat carrying more than 60 migrants destined for Spain has reportedly disappeared, leaving dozens unaccounted for and feared dead.
Coastguards patrolling off the Atlantic Island of Cape Verde sprang into action, rescuing 38 survivors from the vessel, which had embarked from Senegal in West Africa over a month ago.
Senegal’s foreign affairs ministry disclosed that the dramatic rescue operation took place approximately 620 kilometres (385 miles) off West Africa’s coastline.
The exact toll of lives lost and the underlying cause remains unconfirmed. Walking Borders, a dedicated Spanish migration advocacy group, revealed that the ill-fated vessel was a robust fishing boat referred to as a “pirogue.”
Departing from Senegal on July 10, the boat embarked on its fateful journey with a passenger count exceeding 100.
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From Fass Boye, a serene seaside town located 145 kilometres (90 miles) north of Dakar, distress signals were sent out on July 20 by families anxiously awaiting news of their loved ones.
Helena Maleno Garzón, the founder of Walking Borders, shared the harrowing accounts of relatives left in limbo by the radio silence from the ill-fated voyage.
Cheikh Awa Boye, the president of the local fishermen’s association, painfully revealed that his own family was afflicted by this disaster. Two nephews, he disclosed, were among the missing migrants, driven by aspirations of a better life in Spain.
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Startling figures put forth by Walking Borders cast a grim shadow, as nearly 1,000 migrants have perished during attempts to reach Spanish shores by sea in the first half of 2023 alone.
The lethal cocktail of factors including youth unemployment, political instability, and the relentless impact of climate change continues to drive desperate migrants to undertake treacherous journeys aboard overcrowded vessels.
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