Special to the NNPA from The New York Amsterdam News

(The New York Amsterdam News)—Approximately 500 refugees are feared dead after their vessel was rammed by traffickers in icy Mediterranean waters, according to two Palestinians who survived the ordeal.

The boat had been carrying Syrians, Palestinians, Egyptians and Sudanese, including women and children, according to reports, and had departed from Egypt early this month.

It was the second sinking of a refugee boat in a month’s time. The earlier boat, carrying 250 people, sank off the coast of Libya. More than 200 people are feared to have drowned in that incident. Migration experts have put the number of people killed in boat sinkings while trying to reach Europe at more than 3,000 so far this year.

The plight of North and East African refugees was highlighted in a report published earlier this month by Human Rights Watch. The organization found that close to 7,000 East African refugees were illegally expelled from Israel to their home countries, where they face persecution.



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