11 bodies of dead migrants recovered off Libyan coast
Libyan coastguards has recovered the bodies of 11 migrants who died off Libya’s western shore during an attempted crossing to Italy on Sunday.
More than 80 migrants survived the incident off the city of Sabratha, about 70 km (44 miles) west of Tripoli, and coastguards brought them back to the nearby city of Zawiya.
The migrants were from various sub-Saharan African countries, he said.
Since last July there has been a sharp drop in crossings as Libyan authorities backed by Italy pressured local groups to stop smuggling and supported Libya’s coastguard to intercept those who do leave.
European powers have also pushed to reduce flows into Libya from the south and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has flown back 25,000 migrants from Libya to their home countries since the start of last year.
Some 5,330 migrants had crossed from Libya to Italy between Jan. 1 and April 20 this year, about 85 percent lower than during the same period in 2017, according to Italy’s interior ministry.