64,000 migrants die in last decade

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Staff Reporter :
Confronted with significant economic challenges, an increasing number of Bangladeshis, particularly the youth, are leaving the country annually.

The majority of these individuals seeking better fortunes abroad opt for perilous sea voyages to reach European nations, resulting in numerous tragedies where many drown in the ocean.

A recent report from the United Nations migration agency highlighted that drowning has been the leading cause of migrant deaths over the past decade, with more than 36,000 victims.

The UN’s International Organization for Migration (IOM) documented nearly 60 percent of the 64,000 migrant deaths recorded in the last ten years as drowning incidents.

Shariful Hasan, Head of BRAC’s Migration and Youth Initiatives Programme, shared with The New Nation that thousands of Bangladeshi men annually attempt to cross seas on rubber boats and other unsafe vessels to reach Europe.

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He mentioned that approximately 500 Bangladeshis die each year in sea-related accidents, including drownings.

Based on these figures, it’s estimated that around 5,000 Bangladeshi migrants have drowned in the last decade.

The UN agency’s report pointed out that over 27,000 of the sea-related deaths occurred in the Mediterranean, a dangerous passage used by many migrants trying to get from northern Africa to southern Europe.

However, the IOM also noted that the figures reported are incomplete, with two-thirds of the cases remaining unidentified and lacking details such as the sex or age of the migrants in more than half of all cases.

Despite these data limitations, the agency recorded the deaths of ‘almost 5,500 females’ and ‘nearly 3,500 children’ on migration routes.

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