Dozens feared dead as migrant boat capsizes off Tunisia





Migrants are seen in a rubber dinghy as they are rescued by Libyan coast guards off the coast of Libya, 15 January 2015Image copyright
Reuters

Image caption

A UN report says six migrants died every day in 2018 trying to cross the Mediterranean (file image)

Dozens of migrants are thought to have died after their boat capsized in the Mediterranean off the coast of Tunisia.

At least 50 people died in the incident, with 16 survivors, the UN’s International Organization for Migration says.

But Tunisian state media report that 70 migrants drowned about 74km (46 miles) off Sfax, south of the capital Tunis.

Tunisian officials reportedly believe the ship set off from Zuwara in Libya.

Only four bodies have reportedly been recovered from the scene so far, and the navy is searching for others.

Local media say fishermen went out to rescue survivors. The passengers are understood to have been from sub-Saharan Africa.

Thousands of migrants attempt to cross the Mediterranean to Europe every year.

But they often travel in poorly maintained and overcrowded ships, and many have died on the journey.

In January, a UN report said six migrants died crossing the Mediterranean every day in 2018.



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