Inflatable boat carrying migrants sinks off northwestern Türkiye, killing 22

Türkiye
Sat, 16 Mar 2024 9:21 GMT
4 migrants survived the sinking, and more than 500 personnel are involved in search and rescue operations for possible other survivors.
Inflatable boat carrying migrants sinks off northwestern Türkiye, killing 22

The bodies of 22 irregular migrants, including seven children, who died when an inflatable boat sank off the coast of northwestern Türkiye were found on Friday, with search and rescue efforts continuing. 

Ilhami Aktas, governor of the Canakkale province, told Anadolu that "there is no reliable information about how many people were on the boat," which sank off the coast of Eceabat.

He added that four of the migrants survived the sinking.

"We are trying to determine the number of casualties. The survivors are being interviewed. There is some contradictory information," he said.

The bodies of the victims were taken to hospital morgues by ambulance.

Two of the survivors reportedly managed to reach Buyuk Kemikli beach in Eceabat and told authorities of the incident.

Seeking any additional survivors, more than 500 personnel are currently involved in search and rescue operations using an aircraft, two helicopters, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), and 18 Coast Guard Command boats.

Gendarmerie teams are also doing searches around the area of the beach.

Türkiye has been a main route for irregular migrants trying to cross to Europe, especially since 2011, the start of the Syrian civil war.

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