As many as 700 are feared dead after a ship carrying Libyan migrants capsized south of Italy last night, CNN reports. “If confirmed, this would be the worst disaster of recent years in the Mediterranean,” French President Francois Hollande told Canal+ television on Sunday
Since January, an estimated 20,000 migrants have reached Italy by boat, sent by human smugglers operating freely in the power vacuum left by deposed Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi. In that same time, an additional 900 migrants attempting the journey are believed to died, The International Organization for Migration said Friday.
“They are literally trying to find people alive among the dead floating in the water,” Maltese Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said at a party meeting on Sunday. “A tragedy is unfolding in the Mediterranean and if the EU and the world continue to close their eyes, they will be judged in the harshest terms as it was judged in the past when it closed its eyes to genocides when the comfortable did nothing.”
[Image via AP Images]