11 Dead, 66 Missing After Shipwreck Tragedy

(RightWing.org) – The latest United Nations figures show that the Mediterranean Sea crossing is the deadliest route for migrants. The UN’s International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported that at least 3,129 migrants died or disappeared along that central route in 2023, 1,018 so far in 2024, and 29,922 since 2014. Sadly, the international organization recently reported the tragic death of 11 individuals and the disappearance of 64 in two separate shipwrecks.

On June 17, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, UNICEF, and IOM issued a press release detailing those two incidents. The notice said a merchant ship rescued 11 refugees from a capsized vessel in the Ionian Sea near the coast of Calabria in southern Italy. Subsequent news reports confirmed that 12 people were initially rescued, but one of them, a woman, later died.

Media outlets also reported that Italian authorities confirmed that 66 people, including at least 26 children, were missing. The shipwrecked vessel originated from Turkey and reportedly carried refugees from Syria, Iran, and Iraq.

The UN press release also reported the death of 10 people in a second incident involving a wooden boat carrying refugees from Libya. A ship operated by a German-based charity called RESQSHIP rescued 51 individuals and safely transferred them ashore in Lampedusa, Italy. The refugees reportedly originated from Syria, Pakistan, Egypt, and Bangladesh.

RESQSHIP posted a statement on the organization’s X/Twitter account, providing additional details. The notice advised that one of the ships, the Nadir, noticed a distress call reported by AlarmPhone, an independent service providing a distress hotline for “boat people in distress” crossing the Mediterranean Sea to Europe. The 59-foot schooner observed that the wooden boat’s engine had overheated, killing the 10 individuals listed in the UN report.

RESQSHIP workers provided rescue equipment to 62 survivors and towed the disabled boat toward the Italian shore after consulting with local authorities. The following day, a frigate from the Italian Coast Guard arrived and picked up the surviving occupants.

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