35 feared dead after migrant boat capsizes off Libya

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35 feared dead after migrant boat capsizes off Libya

A migrant boat capsized off the Libyan coast, leaving at least 35 people dead or presumed dead, the UN migration agency said.

The shipwreck took place on Friday off the western Libyan city of Sabratha, a major launching point for the mainly African migrants making the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean, said the International Organization for Migration.

The bodies of six migrants were pulled out of the water, while 29 others were missing and presumed dead, according to the IOM. It was not immediately clear what caused the wooden boat to capsize.

The tragedy has resulted in migrants leaving North Africa to seek a better life in Europe. In the past week alone, at least 53 migrants were reported dead or presumed dead off Libya, according to the IOM.

The IOM said that a dedicated search and rescue capacity, a safe disembarkation mechanism and a safe disembarkation mechanism are urgently needed to prevent further deaths and suffering.

The UN s top human rights body found evidence of possible crimes against humanity committed in Libya against migrants held in government-run detention centres and at the hands of human traffickers.

More than 90 people in an overcrowded boat drowned in the Mediterranean Sea days after they left Libya, according to the Doctors Without Borders aid group.

Migrants try to reach European shores when they try to cross the Mediterranean from Libya. The country has emerged as a main transit point for migrants fleeing war and poverty in Africa and the Middle East.

Human traffickers have benefited from the chaos in Libya, smuggled in migrants across the country's long borders with six nations, and have benefited from the chaos in Libya. The migrants are usually packed into ill-equipped rubber boats and set off on risky sea voyages.

According to the International Monetary Fund, there were 476 deaths along the central Mediterranean route between 1 January and 11 April.