Eight asylum-seekers suffocate en route to South Africa

Eight Ethiopian asylum seekers have died while attempting to reach South Africa from Mozambique, according to the UN refugee agency UNHCR.

African migrants

African migrants

The eight were part of a group of 26 Ethiopian men travelling in a container truck from the Marante refugee camp in northern Mozambique.

UNHCR spokesperson Andrej Mahecic says the deaths highlight the dangers asylum seekers face as they attempt to make their way into South Africa in search of a better life.

UNHCR estimates that over 2,500 Ethiopians crossed into South Africa from the Marante camp last year.

“The dangers for people fleeing the Horn of Africa northwards across the Gulf of Aden and Red Sea are relatively well known. We believe the risks for those heading southwards through East Africa or via Indian Ocean routes are also substantial. In January, UNHCR received reports that eight Somali and three Ethiopian asylum-seekers had drowned off the coast of Mozambique. In May, last year, nine Somalis also drowned off Mozambique in the search for safety.”

In the meantime the International Organization for Migration has begun a programme to assist Ethiopian migrants stranded in Tanzania return home.

Many of the migrants become stranded in the country en route to South Africa and beyond.

Filed under Today's News.
UN Radio Daily News Programme
UN Radio Daily News Programme
Updated at 1800 GMT, Monday to Friday
Loading the player ...

CONNECT

 

August 2014
M T W T F S S
« Jul    
 123
45678910
11121314151617
18192021222324
25262728293031