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November 26, 2013

Thirty Haitians die as ship capsizes in Bahamas

Around 30 Haitian migrants were killed and 110 were rescued after 40ft sail freighter capsized off coast of Staniel Cay on 25 November 2013, according to the US Coast Guard.

By Eva Grey

Around 30 Haitian migrants were killed and 110 were rescued after a 40ft sail freighter capsized off coast of Staniel Cay on 25 November 2013, according to the US Coast Guard.

The incident occurred near Harvey Cays, around 125km south-east of New Providence and 417km south-east of Miami, reported The Associated Press.

The death toll from the accident still remains uncertain and its cause is yet to be investigated.

The remains of five victims have been recovered and the US Coast Guard and Bahamas military and police were continuing efforts to recover additional bodies.

The US Coast Guard and Royal Bahamian Defense Force crews have rescued the migrants who were clinging to the hull of the freighter, 15 nautical miles south-west of Staniel Cay, on 26 November.

A US Coast Guard MH-60 helicopter crew responded and hoisted 13 people from the water and deployed a rescue raft, while an HC-144 aircraft and an Air Station Clearwater HC-130 dropped food, supplies and life rafts.

The Bahamian defense force has sent a patrol boat to assist with the rescue efforts.

US Coast Guard chief petty officer Ryan Doss said: "Unfortunately we see these types of tragedies occur on a monthly basis.

"Every year we see hundreds of migrants needlessly lose their lives at sea taking part in these dangerous and illegal voyages."

Last month, a similar incident occurred in Italy when a boat carrying 500 migrants from Libya sank following a fire.

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