Posts Tagged ‘600 missing’
At the moment, events in Libya are followed with great scrutiny, yet scraps of information are coming in to suggest that a boat carrying 600 people may have sunk on Friday
Perplexingly, it is not too clear if that is the case. The ship left port on Friday and witnesses in another ship say they saw debris etc:
“A boat carrying more than 600 migrants capsized off the coast of Libya Friday and many of the passengers are believed to have drowned, the United Nations said Monday, marking what may be the deadliest chapter yet in an escalating immigration crisis unleashed by the conflict in the North African country.
Migrants arriving in Lampedusa over the weekend told staff of the United Nations’ refugee agency that they witnessed a boat brimming with hundreds of migrants—who were predominantly Congolese, Eritrean, Nigerian, Ivory Coast and Somali nationals—sink near the port of Tripoli, said Laura Boldrini, spokeswoman for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. A spokesman for the Libyan government in Tripoli declined to comment on the matter.
Jean-Philippe Chauzy, a spokesman for the International Organization for Migration, said it was unclear how many people survived the shipwreck, but that some of the people aboard the capsized boat managed to swim ashore. He added that migrants have often drowned in similar incidents, because they don’t know how to swim. One woman who swam ashore told IOM staff that her baby drowned in the shipwreck. Mr. Chauzy said that once ashore, she and other migrants were “herded” by armed men onto another boat that eventually reached the tiny island of Lampedusa. “
It is bewildering. How could you lose a ship full of 600 people between the Libyan coast and Italy, and not know?
How can 600 people be thrown in the sea and it doesn’t get reported (or hardly) in the Western media?
Or is it simply a case of “No WASPs, Europeans or Westerners involved, move along, no story”.
Surely, a record of the ship leaving must have been kept, its Captain, its destination and when it didn’t arrive, why weren’t questions asked promptly?
Update 1: There are a few stories coming out, now, on Twitter, 3 days later:
NPR too, but overall too little and far too late.