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Libya - Shipwreck off the Libyan coast claims over 40 lives (DG ECHO, IOM, UNHCR) (ECHO Daily Flash of 21 January 2021)

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  • A tragic shipwreck off the Libyan coast has claimed over 40 lives. 43 persons are feared to have drowned after their boat capsized off Libyan coast. 10 survivors have been rescued and returned to Libya by Coastal Security in Zwara, West of Tripoli.

  • The boat, which embarked in the early hours of 19 January from the city of Zawya, reportedly capsized due to bad sea conditions when its engine stopped, just a few hours after departure. Survivors, mainly from Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Ghana and Gambia, reported that those who perished were all men from West African countries.

  • IOM staff and UNHCR partners provided emergency assistance to the survivors, including food, water and medical screenings, before they were released from the port.

  • Hundreds of people lost their lives in 2020, attempting to cross the Central Mediterranean, the migration route with the highest number of fatalities worldwide. IOM and UNHCR fear that due to the limited ability to monitor routes, the actual number of people who perished in the Central Mediterranean during 2020, could be much higher.