64 feared dead after smuggling boat sinks in Mediterranean

ANI | Updated: Jan 09, 2018 04:56 IST

Rome [Italy], Jan 9 (ANI) At least 64 African migrants are presumed dead after a traffickers' rubber dinghy from Libya sank in the Mediterranean sea.

Among the migrants was a mother of a three-year-old who clung to her as she drowned, local media said on Monday.

A United Nations migration agency official said that 86 people were rescued from the boat by the Italian Coast Guard after it started sinking on Saturday morning.

Flavio Di Giacomo of the International Organization for Migration on Monday said that 150 plus people were aboard the boat when it set out from a Libyan beach.

He claimed that the dinghy was packed and made of poor quality rubber.

Local media reported saying that some eight hours into the Mediterranean crossing, "water started pouring in, panic ensued, the migrants all moved to one side, and the boat lost its balance and was deflating." (ANI)