Boat capsize off Yemen claims over 49 lives, 140 missing

By Web Desk
June 12, 2024
Yemenis tend to their boat at a beach in the Al-Khokha area of Al-Hodeidah Governorate, in the west of the war-torn country on 1 June 2024. — AFP

GENEVA: Over 49 migrants have died, and 140 are missing after their boat capsized off the coast of Yemen, the UN migration agency reported on Tuesday.

The International Organisation of Migration (IOM) stated that the boat departed from Somalia with 260 migrants on board, including Somalis and Ethiopians. The tragic incident occurred on Monday near Alghareef Point in Yemen's Shabwah governorate. The victims included 31 women and six children, IOM noted.

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"This tragedy highlights the urgent need for collective action to tackle migration challenges and ensure migrant safety," said Mohammedali Abunajela, an IOM spokesperson.

Since 2014, the IOM has recorded 1,860 migrant deaths and disappearances along the migration route from East Africa and the Horn of Africa to Gulf countries. Nearly 500 of these deaths were due to drowning.

According to the IOM, this migration route is the most dangerous in the world.

"Often relying on smugglers to navigate the journey, migrants are frequently at an increased risk, including of human trafficking, during the perilous boat journey to Yemen's shores," it said.

Last year, approximately 97,000 migrants made the journey from the Horn of Africa to Yemen, according to the United Nations.

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