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Toll in Migrant Ship Disaster Off Tunisia Rises after 38 Bodies Recovered

Toll in Migrant Ship Disaster Off Tunisia Rises after 38 Bodies Recovered

Friday, 12 July, 2019 - 05:00
An African migrant (C), who was rescued after the boat he was travelling capsized in the Mediterranean Sea off the Tunisian Coast, sits inside a local Red Crescent chapter in Zarzis, Tunisia July 4, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer
Tunis - Asharq Al-Awsat
The death toll from a ship packed with African migrants that sank off the Tunisian coast last week has risen to 58 after Tunisia recovered 38 bodies on Thursday, the Tunisian Red Crescent said.

The boat, which capsized after setting off for Europe from Libya, had been carrying more than 80 people.

"Only today, the Coast Guard recovered 38 bodies off the coast of Zarzis, bringing the death toll to 58," Mongi Slim, an official of the Tunisian Red Crescent, said.

Slim believes that the eventual toll from the incident could be higher than 80, which would make it one of the worst migrant boat disasters to date.

Tunisian fishermen rescued four people who were on board the same overcrowded boat but one later died in hospital.

Libya’s west coast is a main departure point for African migrants hoping to reach Europe.

Sixty-five migrants heading for Europe from Libya drowned in May when their boat capsized off Tunisia.

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