After a boat carrying migrants was discovered off the coast of Cape Verde in West Africa, more than 60 people are thought dead.
The footage shows 38 individuals, some of them are youngsters, being brought ashore on the island of Sal, some of them on stretchers.
It is believed that almost everyone on board the boat, which spent more than a month at sea, was from Senegal. To help stop additional deaths, Cape Verde officials have asked for worldwide action on migration.
According to authorities, the vessel was first seen on Monday, according to AFP. The boat was discovered drifting, contrary to initial reports that claimed it had sunk.
A Spanish fishing boat saw the wooden pirogue-style boat some 320 kilometres (200 miles) off Sal, in the Cape Verde islands, and immediately contacted the authorities, according to the police.
Four children, ages 12 to 16, are among the survivors, according to an International Organisation for Migration (IOM) official.
According to witnesses cited by Senegal’s foreign ministry on Tuesday, the boat carrying 101 passengers left the Senegalese fishing town of Fass Boye on July 10th.
Nearly everyone on the boat had grown up in the area, according to elected official Moda Samb, who also noted that several local families were still awaiting word on whether their relatives were among the survivors.
The ministry declared that it was coordinating with Cape Verdean authorities to set up the repatriation of Senegalese people.
According to reports, the passengers also hail from Sierra Leone and, in one instance, Guinea-Bissau.
The survivors were being cared for, according to Jose Moreira, a health officer on Sal, with an emphasis on rehydration and tests for illnesses like malaria.
Health Minister Filomena Goncalves said: “We know that migration issues are global issues, which require international co-operation, a lot of discussion and global strategy. We all – all the nations – have to sit down at the table and see what we can do so that we don’t lose any more lives at sea, above all.”
Safe migration routes, according to IOM spokeswoman Safa Msehli, are “sorely lacking” and provide “room for smugglers and traffickers to put people on these deadly journeys.”
It’s possible that the survivors wound up in Cape Verde, but it was most likely not where they wanted to go.
The archipelago is located roughly 600 kilometres (km) off the coast of West Africa and along a migration path to the Canary Islands, a Spanish territory that many people view as a gateway to the EU. It is among the most hazardous travels a migrant may take, according to the IOM.
What motivates people to leave their homes and take such a risky voyage, then? Poverty is frequently considered to be a significant issue. Many people view migration to Europe as a way to a better life and to send money back home to help their families.
But there are also other elements at work. A large portion of West Africa is becoming more insecure, and Islamist insurgencies and coups are making an already difficult situation even worse.
In Senegal, there have been reports of violent crackdowns by the government that resulted in the imprisonment of opposition figures. Despite the recent announcement that President Macky Sall would not run for a third term, emotions are still high.