44 People Drown as Refugee Boat Capsizes Trying to Reach Spain

Migrant aid agency Caminado Fronteras has said that at least 44 refugees, including women and infants, drowned this week off Morocco’s coast as they tried to reach Spain.

“Tragedy. At least 44 victims drowned off the coast of Tarfaya (southern Morocco) and 16 women and seven babies were among those on board,” an aid agency official Helena Maleno said in a tweet message.

According to Maleno, the casualties were among 61 migrants who boarded a boat heading for Spain’s Canary Islands, around 100 kilometers away from Tarfaya.

Migrants are considering Morocco, the North African country bordering the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea, as a key transit point to reach the European countries.

According to the Spanish interior ministry, more than 40,000 migrants arrived in the country by sea in 2021.

Last week, the EU European Commissioner for Enlargement and Neighborhood Affairs, Oliver Farrelly signed several agreements with Morocco’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Nasser Bourita, where they also agreed to boost cooperation to stem the flow of illegal migrants entering the bloc.

Farrelly also praised Morocco’s authorities for their hard work against illegal immigrants.

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