Published: 2022-04-16 18:49
Last Updated: 2023-05-28 08:57
The International Organization for Migration announced Saturday that the bodies of six migrants have been found, while it is presumed that 29 others are still missing after their boat sank off the coast of Libya.
The organization's office in Libya said on Twitter, "A small wooden boat carrying about 35 migrants capsized yesterday off Sabratha (west). The bodies of six people were found, while 29 others are missing and presumed dead."
"At least 53 migrants have been reported killed or missing off the Libyan coast this week alone," the UN agency said.
The North African country is an important transit point for tens of thousands of migrants who each year seek to reach Europe via the Italian coasts located some 300 kilometers away.
Most migrants come from sub-Saharan Africa and often fall prey to human traffickers.
Libya, mired in a major political crisis since the fall of Muammar Gaddafi's regime in 2011, is under constant criticism for the mistreatment of migrants, especially in detention centers.
Since the beginning of the year, "at least 475 people have died while trying to cross the central Mediterranean," according to a report by the International Organization for Migration dated April 11, before Saturday's announcement.