Death toll from migrant shipwreck off Yemen rises to 49: UN agency

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A boat carrying more than 200 migrants sank off Yemen, leaving at least 49 dead, mostly women and children, in the latest disaster on the perilous migration route from Africa, a UN agency said Tuesday.

“At least 49 migrants have died and 140 others remain missing after a boat” carrying 260 people capsized off the southern province of Shabwah on Monday, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said.

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It said 31 women and six children were among those confirmed dead, adding that 115 Somali nationals and 145 Ethiopians were initially on board the vessel before it sank.

“Search and rescue operations are ongoing despite significant challenges due to a shortage of operational patrol boats,” the IOM said.

The boat departed from Bossaso in Somalia at around 3 a.m. (0000 GMT) on Sunday amid a “recent rise in migrants from the Horn of Africa travelling to Yemen,” the UN agency said.

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