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File image of a migrant boat. EFE
Tenerife-bound cruise ship rescues migrant boat with five dead and 68 survivors onboard
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Tenerife-bound cruise ship rescues migrant boat with five dead and 68 survivors onboard

The hollowed-out wooden vessel had to be left adrift with two bodies still onboard, which could not be recovered due to bad weather conditions in the area at the time

E. P.

Santa Cruz de Tenerife

Friday, 21 June 2024, 15:37

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A cruise ship heading from Gambia to the Canary Island of Tenerife rescued a 'cayuco' (a hollowed out canoe-style boat) early on Friday morning, with five dead and 68 survivors onboard, according to official sources from Spain's maritime search and rescue agency, Salvamento Marítimo.

The merchant ship Philipp Oldendorff spotted the drifting vessel with people on board 440 miles (815 km) south of Tenerife and provided initial assistance. The Insignia cruise ship was then diverted to the area and ultimately rescued a total of 68 people (provisional data), in addition to three more who had died. The cayuco remains adrift with two deceased individuals whose bodies could not be recovered due to the bad weather conditions in the area at the time.

Salvamento Marítimo has requested the cruise ship that conducted the rescue to provide a definitive count of the rescued individuals. The destination of the Insignia cruise ship is Santa Cruz de Tenerife, where it was due to arrive this morning (Friday) at 7am.

Salvamento Marítimo deployed its rescue vessel Urania, which met with the Insignia passenger ship in case it needed support or assistance. It will then attempt to locate the adrift migrant boat with the two remaining bodies onboard.

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