900 migrants drowned off Tunisia this year

More than 900 migrants have drowned off Tunisia’s coast so far this year as they tried to reach Europe by boat, the North African country’s government said yesterday.

The interior ministry said 901 bodies had been recovered by July 20 following maritime accidents in the Mediterranean Sea.

National Guard spokesman Houcem Eddine Jebabli earlier reported that almost 800 migrants had died by late June, and that more than 34,000 had been intercepted and rescued, most of them from sub-Saharan Africa.

Coastguard units had carried out over 1,300 operations — more than double the number of missions for the same period last year.

Over 550 “organisers and intermediaries” of human trafficking had been arrested so far this year.

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