Migrant drownings add hundreds to Libya death toll

Report
from Reuters - Thomson Reuters Foundation
Published on 10 May 2011 View Original
  • Hundreds fleeing Libya believed drowned

  • Adds to toll of thousands killed in fighting

  • Aid agencies appeal to NATO, EU to help prevent more death

(Updates with NATO spokeswoman)

By Barbara Lewis

GENEVA, May 10 (Reuters) - Fleeing conflict in Libya has become almost as dangerous as staying behind to fight as hundreds of desperate migrants have drowned in a matter of weeks on unseaworthy vessels trying to cross the Mediterranean.

Aid agencies say witnesses have reported a vessel carrying between 500 and 600 people foundered late last week near the Libyan capital Tripoli. Many bodies were seen in the water, although it was unclear how many had drowned.

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