- At least 74 bodies of migrants have been washed ashore off the coast of western Libya
- Aid workers say traffickers deliberately removed the engine from the boat carrying the migrants, essentially condemning them to death
- They add that more bodies are floating in the sea, making it difficult to retrieve them
The Libyan Red Crescent has retrieved at least 74 bodies of migrants that were washed ashore off the coast of Zawiya in western Libya. This marks yet another tragic incident of migrants perishing as they try to reach Europe.
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A spokesperson for the aid group said most of the migrants were from sub-Saharan African countries and were mostly men except three. He added that aid workers saw more bodies floating out at sea, making it difficult to retrieve them.
The spokesperson also said they found an engine-less boat floating next to the bodies. He said this indicated that the traffickers deliberately removed the engine from the boat carrying the migrants, essentially condemning them to death.
A spokesman for the International Organization for Migration, Joel Millman, also said that what had occurred was either "deliberate punishment or murder of migrants."
Further reports indicate that the Libyan coastguard rescued another 500 migrants on Friday and Saturday.
The sea route to Europe via Libya has become popular but highly dangerous at the same time. African migrants often risk their lives to escape civil war and high levels of poverty in their countries in the hope of reaching Europe.
For more on this tragic story, see the video below.