WhatsApp Logo Subscribe
For News Alert

News

Three Pakistanis die in another boat wreck off Libya

Children s coffins mark tragedy of Italy migrant shipwreck

March 1, 2023 10:01 AM


Twitter Share Facebook Share WhatsApp Share

The dust has not yet settled about the tragic boat wreck in Italy that another three three Pakistanis have lost their lives in a boat wreck near Libya's Benghazi city, the Pakistani Foreign Ministry confirmed, reported 24NewsHD TV channel.

In a brief statement on Twitter, the Foreign Office said “In a separate tragic incident, three Pakistani nationals have perished in a boat wreck near Benghazi in Libya."

The Foreign Ministry also said that the Embassy of Pakistan in Tripoli was facilitating the process of transportation of the mortal remains to the country.

https://twitter.com/ForeignOfficePk/status/1630602469553192964

The minister also shared an update on the tragic boat incident in Italy on February 26.

In another tweet, the ministry said "With great sorrow we can confirm that two Pakistanis have lost their lives in the tragic incident of the boat capsized off the coast of Italy, as identified by their families."

https://twitter.com/ForeignOfficePk/status/1630595676760571904

The minister further said that another Pakistani national — who was also aboard the ill-fated boat — has been found among survivors, bringing the total number of Pakistani survivors to 17. "[Pakistan Embassy Italy] remains engaged to assist in the matter," the ministry tweeted and added that the embassy officials have met the survivors and are also in contact with Italian authorities.

https://twitter.com/ForeignOfficePk/status/1630595681470783488

Earlier, two Pakistanis and one Turk national were arrested on suspicion of trafficking up to 200 migrants aboard a wooden boat that smashed apart on rocks off southern Italy on Sunday, killing at least 64 people, the local police said.

Children's coffins mark tragedy of Italy migrant shipwreck

The coffins of 65 victims of a devastating migrant shipwreck off Italy's southern coast were laid out Tuesday in a local sports hall, five of them small and white, containing the bodies of the youngest children that died.

Flower bouquets adorned each coffin in the building in Crotone, while a toy blue car had been laid on the smallest, ready for mourners to pay their respects.

Earlier, the coffins had been opened to allow the identification of the dead, with relatives having flown in from countries including Germany and Austria.

One woman let out a scream which shattered the silence of the sports hall.

A German-speaking man told reporters he was the nephew of an Afghan man who survived -- but lost his wife and three children aged five, eight and 12, after paying $30,000 for the family to cross. A 14-year-old child survived.

The toll from Sunday's shipwreck rose to 65 on Tuesday after another body was found, local officials reported.

Fourteen children were among those confirmed to have died when their overcrowded boat shattered in a storm, the interior ministry said.

Another 79 survived, while several more are believed still to be missing.

It was one of the most tragic incidents in the Central Mediterranean, which tens of thousands of migrants and asylum seekers cross each year hoping to find a new life in Europe.

"We go to this beach in summer. All residents will remember this, that there were so many victims, especially these children and young people," said Daniela Brugnana, 45, who came to pay homage to the victims.

Three men -- two Pakistanis and a Turkish national -- have been detained for alleged people smuggling over the incident, a police spokesman told AFP.

- Afghans, Pakistanis on board -

Bodies, shoes and debris have been washing up along the shoreline for the past three days.

Divers are still searching for potentially up to 20 missing people, although it is not yet clear how many were on the boat.

Charities working with survivors believe there may have been up to 200 people had been on board, from Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan, also Somalia and Syria.

The overcrowded wooden boat was called Summer Love and it set off last Thursday from Izmir in Turkey, survivors told Red Cross charity workers.

Many of those on board were seated below deck and had difficulty breathing, they reportedly said.

Survivors said they paid smugglers between five and eight thousand euros ($5,300 to $8,500), according to the Corriere della Sera daily.

The Afghan foreign ministry expressed its "great sadness" for those killed.

"The Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan prays for forgiveness for the martyrs and patience for the families and relatives of the victims, urging all citizens once again to avoid going to foreign countries through irregular migration," it said.

- Few metres from the coast -

Amid questions about whether more could have be done to prevent the tragedy, both Italy's coastguard and the EU border Frontex revealed they had tried to help.

Frontex said one of its planes had spotted a "heavily overcrowded boat" heading towards Italy late on Saturday, and had informed the Italian authorities.

"There were no signs of distress," it said, adding that the plane monitored the ship until it had to go home to refuel.

It said Italy dispatched two patrol boats to intercept the vessel but they were forced by bad weather to return to port.

Italy's coastguard, for its part, said Frontex had seen the boat "with only one person visible", and a financial crimes police vessel had tried to intercept it.

At 4.30am on Sunday (0330 GMT), reports had come in suggesting the boat was in danger just "a few minutes from the coast", and a rescue mission was launched.

 

With inputs from AFP.



Most Read

  1. FJMU celebrates approval of four gynecology sub-specialties FJMU celebrates approval of four gynecology sub-specialties
  2. ‘Officially a mom-in-law’: Iffat Omar announces daughter’s engagement ‘Officially a mom-in-law’: Iffat Omar announces daughter’s engagement
  3. Bangladesh death toll reaches 105 as govt struggle to quell urest Bangladesh death toll reaches 105 as govt struggle to quell urest
  4. Woman kidnaps anti-feminist Khalilur Rehman Qamar, FIR registered Woman kidnaps anti-feminist Khalilur Rehman Qamar, FIR registered
  5. Lahore tram project gets Maryam Nawaz's approval Lahore tram project gets Maryam Nawaz's approval
  6. Danish Taimoor and Hiba Bukhari's intimate scene from ‘Jaan Nisar’ provokes serious debate Danish Taimoor and Hiba Bukhari's intimate scene from ‘Jaan Nisar’ provokes serious debate