Sub-Saharan immigrant dies after being rescued from inflatable craft

Nine other would-be migrants who accompanied the man were taken to hospital for treatment

A young sub-Saharan immigrant, aged between 18 and 20, died on Friday after being rescued from an inflatable dinghy in the Gibraltar Straits, during a failed attempt to reach the coast of Tarifa. There were nine other would-be migrants with him in the craft.

The young man passed away while he was being taken to a local hospital, after he went into cardiac arrest caused by severe hypothermia.

The other nine people on the boat were treated by the Red Cross in Tarifa.

According to sources from the coastguard, there were strong winds and large waves in the area at the time of the rescue. The authorities had been searching for the boat since the early hours of the morning, until it was located by the coastguard in Tarifa. The craft was located an hour and a quarter later.

The president of the Campo de Gibraltar Pro-Human Rights Association, Andrés de la Peña, criticized the turn of events, also drawing attention to the situation in the north of Morocco. “This will keep happening if nothing is done to improve the conditions of these people,” he said. De la Peña added that “the resources must be put in place so that this does not happen, and so that these people are dissuaded from travelling north. We need to invest in the south,” he concluded.

The nine immigrants are said to be improving, and will be sent to a police station in Cádiz where they will be released pending their possible expulsion from Spain.

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