Organizers allege sabotage after ‘Gaza’s Ark,’ built to break naval blockade, partially sunk by Tuesday morning explosion
ROME — A boat carrying hundreds of migrants went down after catching fire off Italy’s southern coast on Thursday, killing dozens and leaving scores missing, officials said.
Italian coast guard Commander Floriana Segreto told NBC News that at least 94 people had been confirmed dead with another 151 people rescued, adding that “lots more” people remained in the water.
Officials said there were between 400 and 500 migrants on the boat when it sank in the Mediterranean Sea off the Sicilian island of Lampedusa.
ROME (AP) — Italian coast guard officials say a boat carrying about 100 migrants ran aground on a sandbar off Sicily, and six of them died when they tried to swim to shore.
The boat became stranded early Saturday, 15 meters (50 feet) off a beach popular with tourists and locals in Catania.
It is rare for smugglers’ often unseaworthy vessels filled with migrants to aim for shores near cities, and Coast Guard Capt. Roberto D’Arrico said the boat apparently made a navigational error while trying to reach secluded shores undetected.
Authorities were trying to identify the survivors, some of whom swam to safety and others who were rescued by the coast guard. Italian news reports said they included Egyptians and Syrians.
Stunned vacationers stared at the six body bags on the beach.