List of migrant vessel incidents on the Mediterranean Sea

Refugee and migrant deaths at sea (as of 1 June 2016)

This article is a list of migrant vessels captured or capsized on the Mediterranean Sea. The incidents have been referred to as part of the European migrant crisis.

Mediterranean migrant
deaths by quarter[1]
Per 1,000 arrivals
Q1 2015 46.5
Q4 2014 7.8
Q3 2014 30.6
Q2 2014 13.2
Q1 2014 4.2

Prior to 2015

Date Location Passengers Confirmed
Missing Known
21 May 2007 off Malta 53 0 53 0
27 March 2009 off Libya cca. 250 98 cca. 131 21
March/April 2009 off Libya cca. 250 0 cca. 250 0
March/April 2009 off Libya cca. 250 0 cca. 250 0
6 April 2011 off Lampedusa cca. 300 20 130+ 51
3 October 2013 off Lampedusa 500+ 359 30+ 155
11 October 2013 off Lampedusa 200+ 34 20+ 147
11 September 2014 off Malta 500+ 0 500+ 9
15 September 2014 off Libya cca. 250 0 cca. 250 36


Mediterranean situation in 2015
List of migrant vessel incidents on the Mediterranean Sea (Mediterranean)
Date 2015
Location Various locations in the Mediterranean Sea
Cause Vessels capsized
Outcome Several vessels sank, rescues in process
Deaths Over 1200 (estimated; 35 confirmed)
Missing 450
Date Location Passengers Confirmed deaths Missing Known survivors
13 April[2] off Libya cca. 550 9 400+ 144–150
19 April off Libya cca. 850 24 800+ 28
20 April off Rhodes 96 3 0 93
3 May[3] off Libya 3500 (multiple vessels) 10+ ? ?
5 May off Catania Unknown 5 40+ 197
5 May off Crotone 250+ 3 Unknown 250
29 May[4] off Lampedusa 234+ 17 Unknown 217
23 July off Libya 300+ 40+ 40+ 283
27 July off Libya 522 13 ? ?
1 August off Libya 780 5 ? ?
5 August off Libya 370 26 200 ?
11 August off Libya 120 50 50+ ?
15 August[5][6] off Libya cca. 400 49 0 cca. 350
18 August[7] off Turkey Unknown 6 Unknown 0
25 August off Libya cca. 450 50 0 cca. 400
27 August off Libya ? 160 200+ ?
30 August off Libya ? 7 ? ?
1 September off Kos ? 11 ? ?
6 September off Lampedusa ? 20 ? ?
13 September off Farmakonissi 112 34 ? ?
15 September off Turkey 250 22 ? ?
30 September off Lesbos ? 2 11 ? 45

The number of reported deaths of migrants crossing the Mediterranean towards Italy increased in April 2015; a number of different incidents resulted in the deaths of over 1,000 people and led to the staging of rescue operations.[8]

13 April

On 13 April 2015, a vessel sank off the Libyan coast with up to 550 migrants on board. More than 400 people are believed to have drowned.[9] 144–150 people have been rescued and were taken to a hospital in Southern Italy.[10] The capsizing occurred 60 nautical miles (110 km) off the Libyan coast.[11]

Air and sea search operations started in the location of the shipwreck, looking for survivors. Nine bodies were recovered, and the Italian Coast Guard stated that "no more survivors have been found."

16 April

On 16 April, four immigrants arriving in Sicily said they were the only survivors of a sunken ship. They said that 41 people had drowned when their vessel overturned and sank shortly after departing from Libya.[12][13] In an unrelated incident, 15 people were arrested in Sicily following reports that they had thrown 12 other passengers overboard, causing them to drown. According to eyewitnesses, a fight had broken out between Christian and Muslim groups on a boat that left Libya on 14 April, resulting in 12 Christians being thrown overboard.[14][15]

19 April

On 19 April, another boat that had just left the port city of Zuwarah, Tripoli capsized off the Libyan coast, during the night, with up to 850 migrants aboard. 28 people were rescued.[16] The incident happened 60 miles (100 km) off the Libyan coast and 120 miles (190 km) south of the southern Italian island, Lampedusa.[17] The boat may have capsized when people on board moved to one side when a ship approached. People assumed that the passing ship would rescue them.[18] Italian prosecutors say that a Bangladeshi survivor estimated 950 people were on board, and smugglers locked hundreds of the migrants in the ship's hold.[19] Among those on board were about 350 Eritreans, 200 Senegalese, as well as migrants from Syria, Somalia, Sierra Leone, Mali, Gambia, Ivory Coast and Ethiopia.[20][21]

The Maltese Navy and Italian Coast Guard began mounting a rescue operation.[22] Despite 18 ships joining the rescue effort, only 28 survivors and 24 bodies were pulled from the water by nightfall.[23][19] This incident is cited by some as the shipwreck with the highest death toll in the history of the Mediterranean.[24] Among other incidents, however, the sinking of the SS Oria in 1944, with a death toll of over 4,000, claimed more lives.

On 21 April Italian officials reported that the Tunisian captain of the boat had been charged with reckless multiple homicide. It was also reported that the children on board had drowned because they were trapped on the boat's lower two levels.[23][25]

The Italian Navy, at the request of the Prosecutor of Catania, has made available the minesweepers Gaeta and Vieste, along with the corvette Sfinge, for search and localization of the vessel sank.

On 7 May 2015 a wreck blue length of 25 meters has been located approximately 85 miles north east of the Libyan coast at a depth of 375 meters, and correlated - said the Italian Navy - with the wreck of the vessel sank on 18 April.[26]

20 April

Another boat carrying migrants reportedly sank off the east coast of Rhodes, Greece on 20 April, after striking a reef. Initial reports suggested that there had been at least three deaths. 93 people were rescued from the water, with 30 individuals hospitalized.[27] In contrast to the other wrecked ships, which have come from Libya, this boat had departed from Turkey.[28]

Two further reports of ships in distress in the waters between Libya and Italy appeared on 20 April.[29] It was stated that one boat contained up to 150 people, with the other containing up to 300. The precise locations of these boats was not revealed, and it was unclear whether these reports refer to separate vessels.[30] The Italian and Maltese navies are reported as having responded to these calls.[23][30] On Tuesday 21 April it was reported that all 450 passengers had been rescued, despite initial reports of deaths.[31]

5 May

Continue rescue operations and landings of migrants on the coasts of Sicily and Calabria. The ship Phoenix arrives in Pozzallo carrying 369 migrants. Other 675 immigrants have landed in Augusta and in 300 were rescued off the coast of Calabria. On ship container Zeran, arrived in Catania with 197 people, there were five dead bodies. According to Save the Children 40 other immigrants have lost their lives at sea.[32] In Crotone the Panamanian tanker Prince I brought 250 migrants rescued in the Channel of Sicily, but also the bodies of three others, two women and a man, recovered at sea during a rescue.

Meanwhile, also triggered the alarm diseases: about 150 of the 675 migrants arrived on the ship Vega in Augusta were put in isolation in the port for suspected cases of chickenpox and scabies. For doctors there is no danger of contagion and the situation would be under control. Most patients are tested and debilitated by a wait of two months in warehouses in Libya with little food and water.

In Trapani are 104 immigrants arrived on a cargo ship, and other 483 in Palermo on the Italian navy ship Borsini. It also grows the number of smugglers arrested by the Italian police.

Off the coast of Calabria, a rescue operation at about 300 migrants on board a fishing vessel in poor buoyancy occurred about 80 miles from the coast of Calabria.

29 May

The Italian navy rescued 217 migrants who were on board the boats adrift in the channel of Sicily. Also recovered 17 corpses. In the last 24 hours rescued 3,300 migrants.[33]

23 July

283 migrants aboard three boats were rescued by the German warship Schleswig-Holstein at few miles from the Libyan coast and landed in the port of Augusta in Sicily, while 40 are missing or dead according to the testimonies of survivors.

15 August

49 migrants killed by fumes while packed into hold and prevented from exiting the hold by the ship's crew off the coast of Libya; survivors were rescued by the Italian Navy and the ship's captain and crew were arrested.[5][6]

18 August

6 migrants drown off the coast of Turkey attempting to reach a Greek island.[7]

25 August

50 migrants killed by fumes while packed into hold and prevented form exiting the hold by the ship's crew off the coast of Libya; survivors were rescued by a Swedish unit. On the boat they traveled another 400 migrants who are rescued.

See also


  1. "Italy calls for help rescuing migrants as 40 more reportedly drown". The Guardian. 16 April 2015. Retrieved 19 April 2015.
  2. "Hundreds of migrants believed to have drowned off Libya after boat capsizes". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  3. "Immigrati, oltre 3.500 in arrivo Almeno una decina i morti in Libia". TGCOM24. Retrieved 6 May 2015. External link in |website= (help)
  4. "Notizie Attualità La Marina recupera 17 cadaveri al largo della Libia. Salvati 217 migranti". Retrieved 29 May 2015. External link in |publisher= (help)
  5. 1 2 "40 migrants 'killed by fumes' in hold of boat off Libya". Irish Independent. 15 August 2015. Retrieved 17 August 2015.
  6. 1 2 Povoledo, Elisabetta (18 August 2015). "Italy Arrests Ship's Captain and Crew Over Suffocation Deaths of 49 Migrants". New York Times. Retrieved 18 August 2015.
  7. 1 2 Corder, Mike (18 August 2015). "6 migrants drown off Turkish coast trying to reach Greece". Morning Journal. AP. Retrieved 18 August 2015.
  8. "Sea of Death: Many Migrants Drown Trying to Reach Italy". NBC News. 19 April 2015. Retrieved 19 April 2015.
  9. Scherer, Steve; Jones, Gavin; Nebehay, Stephanie. "400 migrants die in shipwreck off Libya, survivors say" (14 April 2015). Reuters. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  10. "Several minors among victims of Libya shipwreck". News24 (15 April 2015). Agence France-Presse. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  11. "Libya migrants: Hundreds feared drowned in Mediterranean". BBC. 15 April 2015. Retrieved 15 April 2015.
  12. "At least 41 drown off Libyan coast". Middle East Eye. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  13. "41 more migrants feared drowned in new shipwreck". Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  14. "Migrants charged with throwing 12 Christians overboard". The Irish Times. 16 April 2015. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
  15. "Muslim migrants 'threw Christians overboard during row on boat from Libya to Italy', say police". The Independent. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  16. Bonomolo, Alessandra; Krichgaessner, Stephanie. "UN says 800 migrants dead in boat disaster as Italy launches rescue of two more vessels". Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  17. "700 migrants feared dead in Mediterranean shipwreck". The Guardian. 19 April 2015. Retrieved 19 April 2015.
  18. "700 feared dead after migrants desperate to get into Europe rush towards rescue ship and capsize their packed fishing boat". Daily Mail. Retrieved 19 April 2015.
  19. 1 2 "Survivor: Smugglers locked hundreds in hold of capsized boat". Associated Press. 20 April 2015.
  20. "Mediterranean boat capsizing: deadliest incident on record". UNHCR. 21 April 2015.
  21. "Mediterranean boat disaster: '200 Senegalese' among dead". BBC News. 30 April 2015.
  22. "Updated – Joseph Muscat and Matteo Renzi call for urgent EU summit meeting". Malta Today. Retrieved 19 April 2015.
  23. 1 2 3 Bonomolo, Alessandra; Kirchgaessner, Stephanie. "Migrant boat captain arrested as survivors of sinking reach Italy". The Guardian. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  24. "Libya migrant boat sinking: Up to 700 feared dead as migrant ship capsizes in waters south of Italy". 19 April 2015. Retrieved 19 April 2015.
  25. "Mediterranean capsized migrants' boat's captain charged". BBC News. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  26. "Localizzato il barcone della tragedia costata 800 vittime". Retrieved 7 May 2015.
  27. "Three reported dead as new footage emerges of migrants being rescued off Greek island of Rhodes". The Independent. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
  28. Zikakou, Ioanna. "Tragedy with 200 Migrants Leaves 3 Dead in Rhodes". Greek Reporter. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
  29. "Two more Mediterranean migrant boats issue distress calls as EU ministers meet". The Guardian. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
  30. 1 2 "New Mediterranean migrant distress calls as EU meets". BBC News. Retrieved 20 April 2015.
  31. Goldstein, Sasha. "Captain, crew member arrested in Mediterranean migrant ship disaster; EU leaders plan to 'destroy' smuggler boats". Daily News. New York. Retrieved 22 April 2015.
  32. "Notizie Attualità La Marina recupera 17 cadaveri al largo della Libia. Salvati 217 migranti". Retrieved 29 May 2015. External link in |publisher= (help)
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 8/3/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.