Migrant death toll off Libyan coast rises to 64

 

The death toll from the people-smuggling boat that sank off the coast of Libya has risen to 64

The Italian Coastguard released dramatic footage of their rescue of 86 people from the boat, hours after it holed and started sinking on Saturday morning (local time). 

According to The Guardian, it was too late for at least 64 people aboard, who were reportedly from Gambia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, Mali, Ivory Coast, Senegal, Cameroon and Nigeria.

"We saved 86 migrants," Maria Rita Agliozzo, an Order of Malta doctor on the Italian coastguard vessel, told Radio Radicale. 

"We did many resuscitations. We resuscitated two children - a two-year-old and a three-year-old - and also a woman."

A distress call was made when a rubber dinghy, carrying up to 150 people, began to deflate. Migrants clung to the boat as it sank, while desperately trying to reach the Coastguard.

This is believed to be the first case of its kind in 2018, with more than 3000 people believed to have died attempting to cross the Mediterranean last year.

Newshub.