24 migrants missing after boat capsizes off Canary Islands

Rescue services take another 22 survivors to safety on Gran Canaria

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria - 18 Nov 2015 - 15:24 UTC
Three of the 22 rescued immigrants.
Three of the 22 rescued immigrants.Elvira Urquijo A. / EFE

Twenty-four people are missing after the migrant boat in which they were traveling from Western Sahara to the Canary Islands capsized 128 nautical miles southwest of the archipelago on Tuesday evening.

Maritime rescue services have taken another 22 survivors to safety at Puerto de Arguineguín, in Mogán, Las Palmas province.  

A further 22 survivors have been taken to safety on La Palma

Spanish coast guard sources described the migrants’ trip as “hell.”

The rescued migrants, all of whom were male, said everyone on the boat had fallen into the water and 24 had not survived, though authorities have yet to confirm that. After arriving on land on Wednesday morning, the survivors were taken to police headquarters at Maspalomas to be identified.

The rescue took place at 8.49pm on Tuesday. Spanish and Moroccan rescue ships remained on site to look for further survivors.

If the number of victims is confirmed, it will be the worst maritime tragedy to have occurred in the Canary Islands in many years.

English version by Susana Urra.

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