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Migrant boat washes ashore in Israel, fate of passengers unknown

October 1, 2023 at 1:40 pm

Israeli policemen and immigration officers watch as African asylum seeker move on after spending the last two days protesting in an outdoor camp near the Nitzana border crossing with Egypt in the Negev Desert on June 29, 2014 [OREN ZIV/AFP via Getty Images]

On a Sunday in Israel, a rubber boat mysteriously appeared on a beach, devoid of any occupants but laden with the possessions of potential migrants, Reuters reports.

Israeli authorities made the discovery along the Mediterranean coast near Netanya, uncovering a disarray of personal belongings, sustenance, water, and travel documents, including three originating from Somalia.

In their efforts to locate survivors, the police initiated a search of the nearby waters while also sharing a photograph of the boat. Strewn across the boat’s floor were what appeared to be clothing, an air pump, and several makeshift inflatable lifebuoys.

The investigation into the authenticity and origin of the travel documents is currently underway, as stated by the police.

According to data from the United Nations’ International Organization for Migration, this year has witnessed over 187,000 individuals embarking on the perilous Mediterranean crossing, with a grim record of 2,093 casualties recorded along the central Mediterranean route.

These migrants, predominantly hailing from Africa, undertake this treacherous journey in small, unsteady vessels, driven by the desire to escape conflict or seek improved prospects for their lives in Europe.

READ: Turkiye nabs 29 irregular migrants in Aegean Sea