Libya: Migrant death toll tops 200
TRIPOLI, Libya - Libya has called off efforts to retrieve bodies of more than 200 illegal migrants who drowned when their overcrowded boat capsized in the stormy waters of the Mediterranean as they set off for a better life in Europe.
Laurence Hart, an official with the International Organization for Migration in Libya, said yesterday that authorities stopped the rescue operation because chances were slim of finding more survivors from the weekend incident.
Only 20 survived when the wooden vessel with 257 people on board sunk.
Hart said aid workers heard survivors' accounts at the Twesha refugee center outside of Tripoli on yesterday.
"Many had kidney problems from swallowing sea water because they spent eight hours in the sea," he said.
About 21 bodies were found by Tuesday morning, and several more bodies washed ashore Tuesday night.