Some 40 people are believed to have drowned off the coast of Libya after a boat disaster on the Mediterranean. The tragedy comes just weeks after reports of another shipwreck that left as many as 150 refugees and migrants dead in the worst incident on the Mediterranean this year.
The disaster has prompted the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) to renew its urgent call for action to save lives. It is estimated that some 900 people have lost their lives attempting to make the journey across the Mediterranean this year alone.
UNHCR is calling for renewed efforts to reduce the loss of life at sea, including a return of EU State search and rescue vessels at a time when States have largely withdrawn. Leal and logistical restrictions impeding NGO search and rescue operations both at sea and in the air should be lifted, the agency added.