News World Libya: Tragic images as 74 migrant bodies wash ashore

Libya: Tragic images as 74 migrant bodies wash ashore

The Libyan Red Crescent says at least 74 bodies of African migrants have washed ashore in western Libya. Photo: AP
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The bodies of 74 migrants have washed on a beach in the Libyan city of Zawiya on the Mediterranean Sea, an aid group says.

LIbya’s Red Crescent spokesman Mohammed al-Misrati told The Associated Press that the bodies washed ashore on Tuesday.

He says the circumstances involving the drowning of the migrants are not yet clear.

The agency posted photos on its Twitter account of dozens of bodies in white body bags, lined up along the shore.

Mr al-Misrati also said local authorities will take the bodies to a cemetery in the capital of Tripoli that’s allocated for unidentified persons.

The journey from Libya to Italy has killed hundreds of migrants this year. Photo: AP

Migrant deaths have risen to record levels along the Libya-Italy smuggling route across the Mediterranean Sea.

International Organisation of Migration, the UN’s migration agency, said 110 people were onboard when the vessel originally set off.

It said traffickers had taken the engines from the dinghy intentionally before leaving it to drift, according to Sky News.

“This is not a only horrible number of deaths in one incident but it strikes us as something that we haven’t really seen much of, which is either deliberate punishment or murder of migrants,” an IOM spokesman said.

A Libyan coastguard spokesman told Sky traffickers sometimes pack 180 people into each vessel.

Libya has become a popular but at times deadly route for migrants seeking to reach Europe to flee poverty and famine in Africa.

The bodies washed up on a beach in western Libya. Photo: AP

Authorities have noted record numbers of drowning along the Libya to Italy smuggling route.

Nearly 4,600 migrant deaths have been recorded but it is believed the total number of fatalities is much higher.

The IOM said 365 people had died attempting to cross from Libya to Italy this year, including the latest tragedy.

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