02 April 2009

March 2009

MODICA, 2 April 2009 - At least 316 migrants and refugees died along the borders of Europe in March. A figure based on press reports, and still uncertain, because of the contradictory news about the last tragedy in Libya, off Janzur, happened the 29 March 2009. Reuters reported about 100 dead bodies recovered and 245 people reported to be missing at sea, while the Libyan mission of the IOM said only 20 corpses were found and 210 people were missing. Anyway it is one of the worst tragedies of ever on the routes of migration, after the shipwreck of Portopalo, on 25 December 1996, in which 283 people died 14 miles from Sicily. According to Fortress Europe, at least 3,163 people have lost their lives in the Sicily Channel since 1994. Just one week before the shipwreck of Janzur, 67 people were drowned close to the island of Kerkennah, in Tunisia.

Still in March, two people were found dead in the Italian ports of Ancona and Venezia, in the Adriatic sea, hidden in the trucks embarked on the ferries coming from Greece. Then three victims were reported in the Strait of Gibraltar, and one in Ceuta, the Spanish enclave in Morocco. It happened the night of March 7. A horrific death. Trying to overcome the six meters high fence of the border, a young sub-Saharan man injured himself and remained hung on the top of the fence bleeding. When the police arrived, he had already died bloodless. Last, according to the news reported by the Nigerian embassy in Algeria, 14 migrants were recently found dead in the Algerian desert.