Death toll in Italy migrant shipwreck rises to 61: official
The wooden sailing boat carrying migrants to Europe had sailed from Turkey and crashed early on Sunday against rocks near Steccato di Cutro, a seaside resort on the eastern coast of Calabria.
A total of 61 people have been found dead so far, while 80 were rescued, said Manuela Curra, a provincial government official.
Yet another horrific shipwreck has claimed the lives of dozens of people, including children - this time off the coast of Italy.— António Guterres (@antonioguterres) February 26, 2023
I say once again: Every person searching for a better life deserves safety & dignity. We need safe, legal routes for migrants & refugees.
The vessel was carrying people from Afghanistan, Iran and several other countries, and the victims included 12 children, authorities said earlier.
Based on reports from survivors, authorities believe 180 to 200 people in total had been on board the vessel, she added.
One survivor was arrested on migrant trafficking charges on Sunday, but the Guardia di Finanza customs police said they were finalising the arrest of two more people on suspicion of cooperating with the alleged smuggler.
Another terrible shipwreck in the Mediterranean off the Italian coast. Dozens of people have died, many children.— Filippo Grandi (@FilippoGrandi) February 26, 2023
We mourn them and stand in solidarity with the survivors.
Time for States to stop arguing and to agree on just, effective, shared measures to avoid more tragedies.
Charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF), operating on the ground, said they were assisting several people who had lost relatives in the shipwreck.
"We have cases of children who became orphans, such as a 12-year-old Afghan boy who lost his entire family, a family of nine people, including four siblings, parents and other close relatives," said Sergio Di Dato, from MSF.
Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Monday said that more than two dozen Pakistanis were believed to have been among those who drowned.