Italy boat sinking: Dozens die

ROME - At least 94 people have died after a boat carrying African migrants sank off the southern Italian island of Lampedusa, the island's mayor says.

More than 150 have been rescued but about 200 are missing, officials say.

Passengers reportedly threw themselves into the sea as the vessel got into trouble and Italian officials were quoted as saying that dozens of people were still in the water.

Most of those on board were from Eritrea and Somalia, said the UNHCR.

The boat was believed to have sailed from Libya, the Italian coast guard said.

Earlier this week, 13 migrants drowned while trying to reach Sicily.

In the latest incident, Simona Moscarelli, a spokeswoman from the International Organization for Migration in Rome, told the BBC that "at one point there was a fire on the boat and so the migrants moved, all of them, to one side of the boat which capsized".

She estimated that only three of about 100 women on board survived, adding that most of the migrants were unable to swim. "Only the strongest survived," she told the Associated Press news agency.

It is one of the worst such disasters to occur off the Italian coast in recent years; Prime Minister Enrico Letta tweeted that it was "an immense tragedy".

The boat was believed to have been carrying about 500 people at the time.

"There is no miraculous solution to the migrant exodus issue," said Italian Foreign Minister Emma Bonino. "If there were we would have found it and put it into action."

Also on Thursday, local media reported that around 200 migrants were escorted to the port of Syracuse on the island of Sicily, when the vessel encountered difficulties five miles off the coast.

Footage from the scene showed bodies being laid out on Lampedusa's dockside.

The mayor of Lampedusa, Giusi Nicolini, described the scene as a "continuous horror".

Comments (4)

see video footage here: www.fun4days.com/?share=34850

wacpop - 4 October 2013

We are informed that the Italian law makers and others elsewhere held a minute of silence to honor the dead. Strangely not a single word from either the African Union or any of the presidents of the nationals who perished..And you want people to take you seriously as leaders? This brings me to the mass murders in Kenya, again another deafening silence from the AU and its leadership. To them it was a Kenyan problem..what kind of animals are our leadership? Having said this, what does this say about the security sector leadership in Kenya given the fact that some of the people died from friendly fire? Is this not about time that President Kenyatta did everyone a favour and fire the leadership and get his hands dirty by cleaning up the management therein..Methinks many of the big wigs have no business occupying the positions they hold. Kenya has upward of 30 million people why not re-organise the force and make sure the right persons are in the right jobs? Most of the leadership in the security forces embarrassed him and themselves no end and heads should roll...its about time anyway.

gutter poet - 6 October 2013

We are informed that the Italian law makers and others elsewhere held a minute of silence to honor the dead. Strangely not a single word from either the African Union or any of the presidents of the nationals who perished..And you want people to take you seriously as leaders? This brings me to the mass murders in Kenya, again another deafening silence from the AU and its leadership. To them it was a Kenyan problem..what kind of animals are our leadership? Having said this, what does this say about the security sector leadership in Kenya given the fact that some of the people died from friendly fire? Is this not about time that President Kenyatta did everyone a favour and fire the leadership and get his hands dirty by cleaning up the management therein..Methinks many of the big wigs have no business occupying the positions they hold. Kenya has upward of 30 million people why not re-organise the force and make sure the right persons are in the right jobs? Most of the leadership in the security forces embarrassed him and themselves no end and heads should roll...its about time anyway.

gutter poet - 6 October 2013

Hutongi hweudzvanyiriri sehwe ZANU PF hwoita vanhu vatize misha nokuda kweZhara nekuvurawa . Ndinovurombo nehama dzedu dzatisiya ndinoti Musiki vaita kuda kwavo .Ngatishingei tikunde hwutongi hweudzvanyiriri muAfrica sehwa baba Chatunga hwoita vanhu vakache shomho nemeno . Nehanda Nyakasikana mweya unoera tosvika rinhi tichitambudzika munyika yababa vanotora vogovana pachavo riva remuAfrica isu tichingova mbwa . kuMberengwa dunhu revarombo vanhu vazhinji vakafira mugwizi Limpopo vachifohla kuti vandotsvaka kurarama kujoni . Hwutongi hweudzvanyiriri hwunoita vanhu titambure .Vatungamiriri veAfrica chinjai maitiro ngatigutei tose ndokunohi kutonga ka

MukarangawekuMberengwa - 14 October 2013

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