March 24, 2017
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Over 700 refugees feared drowned off Italy: UN

By Khaama Press - Sun May 29 2016, 5:16 pm

500 migrants feared deadOver 700 refugees may have drowned in three Mediterranean Sea shipwrecks south of Italy in the last few days, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has said.

A spokesperson for UNHCR Carlotta Sami has told The Associated Press that an estimated 100 people were missing from a smugglers’ boat that capsized on Wednesday.

Sami further added that around 550 others were missing from a boat that capsized on Thursday morning.

In the meantime, the refugees have said that the boat which was carrying about 670 people did not have an engine and was being towed by another smuggling boat before it capsized.

At least 25 people from it survived and 79 others were rescued by patrol boats and 15 dead bodies were recovered.

According to Sami, around 45 more bodies were recovered from a shipwreck on Friday and many more were reported missing.

Meanwhile, the AFP news agency reported that 19 refugees were rescued from a boat in English Channel in a separate development.

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