25 Palestinians aboard sunken migrant vessel, says PA foreign ministry

The New Arab  /  September 25, 2022

The foreign ministry stressed that the current figures are preliminary and may require further investigation. 

At least 25 Palestinians were aboard the vessel which tragically sunk off the Syrian coast, having departed from Minyeh in Lebanon carrying around 150 passengers.

At least 94 people are now known to have died after the ship sunk while heading to Italy via the eastern Mediterranean.

Of the 25 Palestinians confirmed aboard the vessel 6 lost their lives, three have been successfully rescued while 16 are still among the missing, said the Palestinian foreign ministry

“The ministry is following up every single drowned or missing person, and our embassy in Lebanon is doing everything we can to help and stand by the families of the martyrs,” said Political Adviser to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Ahmad al-Dik in a statement. 

Al-Dik’s statement stressed that the current figures are preliminary and may require considerable further investigation. 

The Palestinian embassy in Lebanon had already joined an operations room for coordinating efforts to reunite the living and the dead with their families, alongside Lebanese ministries and NGOs.

All 25 Palestinians were residents of refugee camps inside Lebanon. 

The Lebanese army has published a statement claiming it has apprehended a man for running an active smuggling network between Arida and Minyeh, on the country’s northernmost stretch of coast. 

The man arrested by Lebanese security services “admitted his involvement in preparing for the last smuggling operation from Lebanon to Italy by sea”. 

“Investigations into the network are still ongoing,” said the army’s statement, which did not reveal the identity of the suspect or the nature of the investigation.