On 26 February, at least 60 migrants died when their boat sank near Crotone, Italy. The boat, which left from Izmir (Turkey), was carrying between 100 and 200 people from Afghanistan, Pakistan and Somalia, among others. Rescue services do not yet know the total number of people who attempted the crossing, and fear that the number of victims is much higher.
Reaction to the tragedy has been swift. Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni (Fratelli d'Italia, far right) expressed her "deep sorrow", while placing the blame on human trafficking. In its fight against immigration, Italy passed a law on 23 February this year making it difficult for NGOs to rescue migrants at sea. NGOs consider the text ineffective, dangerous and neglectful of human rights. Since the beginning of the year, more than 200 migrants have died trying to cross the Mediterranean.
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