These families disembarking were the lucky ones – in another rescue operation on Saturday (August 15) at least 40 bodies were found after apparently getting trapped and suffocating in the water-logged hold of a fishing boat.
The Norwegian ship took on the immigrants and arrived at Catania, Sicily, where Michelangelo Patane, the Catania prosecutor, said, the crew prevented “people from emerging from the hold, where the air was unbreathable because there were so many people down there, along with the gas fumes from the ship’s motors”. Italian coastguard officials said survivors include numerous victims’ widows. Migrants who have safely arrived in Italy say they are charged between 1,200 and 1,800 dollars for a place on the deck of boats.
The Italian Navy and a Norwegian ship rescued 312 survivors. A crane was being deployed to transfer the container holding the dead onto a truck for transport to a morgue. The burial will be in Catania’s cemetery. Rough seas complicated rescuers’ work. Migrants are often crammed into overcrowded boats or rubber dinghies, in a desperate effort to reach the shores of Italy or Greece.
Police in Macedonia said on Monday that a migrant walking along rail tracks on the northern border with Serbia had died after being hit by a freight train. Most of those making the risky Mediterranean crossing are from war torn countries or fleeing violence and poverty in parts of the Middle East and Africa.
The migrant died on Monday while being transported to a hospital in the capital, Skopje, becoming the 29th person to die on train tracks in almost two years.