Migrants abandoned in Sudan-Libya desert

2014-05-01 15:01
A displaced woman stands by her washing at the UN compound where she has sought shelter in Bentiu, in oil-rich Unity state, in South Sudan. (File, AP)

A displaced woman stands by her washing at the UN compound where she has sought shelter in Bentiu, in oil-rich Unity state, in South Sudan. (File, AP)

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Khartoum - Nine illegal immigrants have died among some 300 abandoned by smugglers in the scorching Sudanese-Libyan desert, with the others in poor condition, Khartoum's army said on Wednesday.

"They were on their way to Libya as illegal immigrants," spokesperson Sawarmi Khaled Saad told AFP.

"The smugglers left them in the desert... on the border between Sudan and Libya," he said, adding that all of the dead were Sudanese.

The others are from various nationalities and include Ethiopians, Eritreans, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis, Saad said.

Separately, he said on the defence ministry website that the total number of victims was 319 and that the rescue was by a joint force of Sudanese and Libyan troops.

"Nine of them died and the others are in a bad condition. They are getting treatment and being transferred to Dongola," the statement said, referring to a town about 500km northwest of Khartoum.

Read more on:    sudan  |  libya  |  east africa  |  migrants
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