IOM’s regional director for East Africa said the migrants involved in the incident were being transported by smugglers.
At least 34 migrants drowned after their boat capsized off Djibouti, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) announced on Monday, the second such accident in just over a month.
“The migrants were transported by smugglers… Apprehending and prosecuting the traffickers and smugglers who exploit the vulnerabilities of migrants must become a priority. Too many lives needlessly lost, ”wrote on Twitter Mohammed Abdiker, IOM Regional Director for East Africa and the Horn of Africa.
34 migrants tragically died off the coast of Djibouti after their boat capsized. The migrants were transported by smugglers. Second such tragedy in a little over a month. 20 dead and several injured in March
– Mohammed Abdiker (@AbdikerM) April 12, 2021
The incident comes shortly after at least four people were found dead on a migrant boat off the Canary Island of El Hierro on Sunday, the Spanish Red Cross said.
The vessel was spotted by a fishing boat about 193 km (120 miles) south of El Hierro, one of the smaller Canary Islands, according to local media.
The number of undocumented migrants and refugees arriving in the Spanish Canary Islands in the Atlantic Ocean was more than eight times higher last year than in 2019, the effect of COVID-19 on tourism and others industries in North and Sub-Saharan Africa by pushing much more. to undertake the dangerous journey.
In February, at least 41 people drowned when their boat capsized in the central Mediterranean as migrants and refugees fled conflict-ridden Libya in search of a better life in Europe.
United Nations migration and refugee agencies, IOM and UNHCR, said in a joint statement at the time that the drowned were among at least 120 migrants on a rubber dinghy that left Libya on February 18.