Twenty corpses of migrants from sub-Saharan Africa were recovered Thursday off Sfax, on the east coast of Tunisia, after the sinking of their makeshift boat, which had more than 40 people on board.
According to Mohamed Zekri, spokesperson for the Tunisian Ministry of Defense, five other migrants who were on board this boat were rescued and search operations by the maritime guards are still ongoing.
5 people rescued
For his part, Interior Ministry spokesman Khaled Hayouni said the bodies of 15 migrants had been recovered “for the moment” and that five people had been rescued. According to him, the boat had left Sidi Mansour, in the region of Sfax, to illegally reach the Italian coast. In mid-December, the Tunisian navy had saved 93 migrants of different African nationalities, including three Tunisians off Sfax.
Despite the health crisis linked to the new coronavirus pandemic, the movement of clandestine migration from the Maghreb countries, in particular Tunisia and Libya, to Europe continues, in particular to the Italian coasts where migrants hope to find work and prospects. .
Between the start of the year and mid-September, 8,581 people were intercepted while trying to reach Europe by sea from the Tunisian coast, according to statistics from the Ministry of the Interior.