Death toll over 300 in Italy boat disaster

Divers continue a grim search for bodies on a boat that sank off Lampedusa.

Death toll over 300 in Italy boat disaster

World Bulletin/News Desk

Death toll has risen to 302 after a boat carrying over 500 refugees sank off the island of Lampedusa last week.

Rescue teams labor to recover dead bodies stuck on the boat which now lies 47 meters deep.

Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta and the European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso on Wednesday visited the island, regarded as the first stop for thousands of African shelter-seekers who risk their lives to reach Italy every year.

Barroso pledged 30 million euros in aid to refugees in Italy, while Letta said a state funeral would be held for the deceased and the country's controversial immigration law would be debated in the parliament.

The refugee influx to Italy has been on the rise as in the early hours of Monday a total of 201 refugees landed on the Sicily island, while another boat carrying 155 Syrians reached the Sicilian coast.

The boat that sank on Oct 2 is believed to have been carrying 518 people, mostly Eritreans and Somalis, with only 155 surviving the disaster.

Last Mod: 10 Ekim 2013, 09:48
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