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Monday, 30 September 2013

Drowned Just A Short Swim From Shore, The 13 Desperate Migrants Who Plunged From overcrowded Smuggler Ship After It Ran Aground Off Sicily

Horror: Rescuers pause to pay their respects to the 13 victims of the tragedy

The bodies of 13 immigrants have washed up on the coast of Sicily after a boat carrying 200 people ran aground as it approached the shore.
When the boat ran into difficulties in rough seas near the coastal town of Scicli this morning, the migrants it was carrying jumped into the sea.
Most made it to shore and ran away, but a number of men were unable to swim strongly enough and drowned.
Warning: graphic content

Victims: 13 immigrants drowned off the coast of Sicily after their boat ran aground this morning
Victims: 13 immigrants drowned off the coast of Sicily after their boat ran aground this morning
Horror: Rescuers pause to pay their respects to the 13 victims of the tragedy
Horror: Rescuers pause to pay their respects to the 13 victims of the tragedy

Rescue boats and divers are now combing the waters looking for more bodies.
Two alleged leaders have been arrested on suspicion of people-trafficking, according to Italian newspapers.

One of the alleged smugglers is said to have lashed out at a swimmer who tried to rescue him from the water.
As well as the 13 men who drowned, a number of other immigrants had to be rescued, and several - including a pregnant woman - were taken to hospital for treatment.
Accident: This boat was carrying around 200 people when it ran aground in rough seas near shore
Accident: This boat was carrying around 200 people when it ran aground in rough seas near shore
Grief: A priest says prayers over the bodies of the victims, who were trying to immigrate to Italy
Grief: A priest says prayers over the bodies of the victims, who were trying to immigrate to Italy

One immigrant who tried to escape after reaching the shore was hit by a car on a nearby road and suffered serious injuries.
In addition, 20 children are among the 70 migrants apprehended so far, most of whom came from Eritrea in East Africa, according to Corriere Della Sera.
The nationality of the 13 victims, whose bodies were laid out on the shore, is not yet known.
However, Sicily and surrounding islands are notorious hotspots for immigrants arriving by boats from Tunisia, Libya and sub-Saharan Africa.
Arrests: Two people were apprehended by police on suspicion of people-smuggling and taken into custody
Arrests: Two people were apprehended by police on suspicion of people-smuggling and taken into custody
Rescue: Quick thinking by bystanders helped to save the life of several migrants trying to swim to safety
Rescue: Quick thinking by bystanders helped to save the life of several migrants trying to swim to safety

The region has also attracted a large number of Syrian immigrants in recent weeks following the continued violence in the country's civil war.
This is not the first time in recent months that illegal migrants making the desperate journey to Italy have drowned on the way.
Last month six Egyptians died after they jumped out of their trawler, thinking they had reached land, while in July seven immigrants drowned while trying to hold on to a fishing cage being towed to shore.

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