Tag Archive | Sicily

MAGNITUDE 3.3 SICILY, ITALY #earthquake #Sicily #Italy


Subject to change

Depth: 8 km

Distances: 245 km NE of Tunis, Tunisia / pop: 694,000 / local time: 18:14:37.6 2020-05-04

75 km W of Palermo, Italy / pop: 673,000 / local time: 19:14:37.6 2020-05-04
6 km S of Trapani, Italy / pop: 68,400 / local time: 19:14:37.6 2020-05-04

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Boat disaster; 70 missing off Sicily

Bodies of migrants taken out of the fishing boat in Pozzallo
Some 70 persons are missing in new migrant-boat disaster that occurred off the coast of Sicily a few days ago, UNHCR sources said Thursday based on accounts from some of the 27 survivors. The findings were confirmed by prosecutors in Catania, who have opened an investigation, judicial sources said.
 
The survivors arrived in the Sicilian port of Catania on Wednesday after being rescued by the Italian authorities.
 
The news of the missing people came on the same day that the death toll of another migrant-boat disaster earlier this week was given as 45, not 30 as previously estimated. The victims of that disaster were in a fishing boat carrying 600 people, more than double the capacity. The dead migrants are believed to have died from being crushed or asphyxiated. Italy is having trouble managing after a massive increase this year in the already big flow of migrants who attempt the hazardous crossing from North Africa to Italy. The Mare Nostrum search-and-rescue program, which launched after roughly 400 migrants died off Sicily last October, has saved some 65,000 migrants since the start of the year, already more than 2011’s record of 63,000 migrant arrivals.
 
Premier Matteo Renzi accused the European Union of looking the other way and not doing enough to help Italy after dozens of people were killed in two other migrant disasters in May.
 
Over the past eight months, Italy has repeatedly appealed for international help in the face of the waves of newcomers fleeing their homelands in vast numbers which increase in spring as sea conditions improve.
 
On Tuesday, Cardinal Angelo Bagnasco, head of the Italian Bishops Conference, said that the ongoing illegal immigration tragedies “shame the world and civilization,” while Matteo Salvini, Northern League secretary threw blame at government leaders on Thursday writing on Facebook “the jackets of those who govern are always more stained with blood, the cemeteries are always more full, the pockets of Italians are always increasingly empty”.
 
Renzi continues in his requests for EU assistance.
 
Approximately 500 migrants and refugees have died in the Mediterranean Sea since the beginning of 2014, according to estimates by the United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR). Despite extensive efforts by the Italian authorities and assistance from private vessels, the agency reports, hundreds of migrants and refugees continue to lose their lives on Europe’ borders.
 
The UNHCR underscored that the latest tragedies show that refugees have little choice but to risk their lives by crossing the Mediterranean Sea in order to flee wars and persecution. The agency reiterated that governments should provide legal alternatives to the dangerous sea crossings, such as resettlement, admittance on the basis of humanitarian reasons and facilitated family reunification, ensuring that those in desperate need of refuge can seek and find protection and asylum. (ANSAmed).