Italy Boat Shipwreck ; More than 100 people feared dead

Rome: Italy Boat Shipwreck: More than 100 people, including children, are feared dead after their boat capsized in heavy seas off southern Italy, media reported.

According to the BBC, at least 62 migrants have been confirmed dead, and 12 children, including infants, are said to be among the victims.

The ship, which is believed to be carrying about 200 passengers, broke up while landing near Croton on Sunday. According to reports, there were people from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria, Iraq and Iran.

A body has been found on the shore of a beach resort near Calabria. The Coast Guard said 80 people were found alive “including those who managed to reach shore after the sinking”, meaning many more are still missing.

According to customs police, one survivor was arrested on suspicion of migrant smuggling. Most of the passengers were from Pakistan. Pakistani Prime Minister Shabaz Sharif said on Monday that more than 20 Pakistanis were believed to be among the drowned and asked diplomats to confirm the facts as soon as possible, according to the BBC.

As relief and evacuation efforts continue, a group of shipwreck survivors struggle to cope with the loss of their loved ones. At a makeshift reception center in the town of Isola di Capo Rizzuto, some people wept silently, or just looked under blankets.

“They have been badly affected,” said Sergio Di Dato of the charity Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF). “Some children have lost entire families. We support them.”

A 16-year-old Afghan boy lost his 28-year-old sister who died on a neighboring beach. She couldn’t muster the strength to tell her parents, the BBC reported.

A 43-year-old Afghan man survived with his 14-year-old son, but his wife and three children, ages 13, 9, and 5, survived. Another Afghan woman refused to leave the beach after losing her husband in tears.


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