UN says 45 Tunisian migrants missing after boat capsizes

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Forty-five migrants are missing and feared dead after their boat sank in the central Mediterranean on Wednesday as they tried to reach Europe from Tunisia, the United Nations migration agency said, citing accounts from survivors.

In a separate shipwreck, Italy’s coast guard said on Wednesday it had found the bodies of nine people and rescued 22, with 15 feared missing.

The survivors were taken to the nearby Italian island of Lampedusa, the first port of call for many migrants seeking to reach the European Union.

The UN’s Organisation for Migration posted on social media platform X on Friday that its staff on Lampedusa learned from the survivors that a second boat that had left from Tunisia also sank on Wednesday, and all its 45 passengers are missing.