comscore More than 130 migrants appear to be missing off Djibouti, U.N. says | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
News

More than 130 migrants appear to be missing off Djibouti, U.N. says

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Rescuers search for survivors on the beach after two boats carrying migrants capsized off the shore near Godoria, in northeast Djibouti today. More than 130 migrants were thought to be missing after the two boats capsized Tuesday off the East African nation of Djibouti, the International Organization for Migration said.

JOHANNESBURG >> More than 130 migrants were thought to be missing after two boats capsized today off the tiny East African nation of Djibouti, the U.N. migration agency said.

Local police had found five bodies and search efforts were underway, the U.N. statement said. Witnesses said the boats were overloaded and large waves caused them to tip over about a half-hour after departing.

The migration agency said its team at the site found an 18-year-old survivor who reportedly boarded a boat with another 130 people, including 16 women. There were no immediate details on the second boat.

Thousands of migrants from the turbulent Horn of Africa region set off every year from Djibouti to cross the Bab al-Mandab Strait for the Arabian Peninsula with hopes of finding work in rich Gulf countries.

The crossing is dangerous, with smugglers in some cases forcing migrants overboard before reaching their destination. Other boats have been fired on as they approach the coast of Yemen, where fighting continues between pro-government forces backed by a Saudi-led coalition and Houthi rebels.

The U.N. migration agency operates a migrant response center in the Obock region where Tuesday morning’s capsizing occurred as well as four similar centers in neighboring Somalia and Ethiopia. According to the nearly 7,000 migrants registered at the centers between January and July 2018, a “vast majority” were Ethiopian, young and male and headed toward Saudi Arabia.

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

Be the first to know
Get web push notifications from Star-Advertiser when the next breaking story happens — it's FREE! You just need a supported web browser.
Subscribe for this feature
Comments (0)

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Terms of Service. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Scroll Up