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According to Caminando Fronteras, 2,390 people died or disappeared while trying to migrate to Spain in 2022.

“I am looking for my brother MD, he is from Senegal. I need help please. He disappeared many days ago, he was with 55 people. He left his body, but it has been too many days, they should have arrived by now. It doesn’t take long, even if there are problems. My wife and mother have been worried for a long time, sleepless. Now I… haven’t slept for five days, I’m busy. I think they should have arrived by now,” says the brother of one of the 2,390 people who died trying to reach Spain in 2022. The latest report from the Caminando Fronteras Collective.

That’s one of the messages the organization received through its Monitoring and Support Service for People at Sea and Their Families, whose annual report provides new data on migrant disappearances and deaths at our borders. Of the 2,390 victims documented by the NGO, 42 died at land borders – 40 in the Melilla tragedy, while the rest lost their lives on sea routes. Among them were 288 women and 101 boys and girls, according to the Right to Life Monitoring 2022 study.

“Each victim has a history, a family, a community. They shared desires, dreams, hopes and a zest for life that were lacking,” the report recalled. “Each of them leaves a void that is felt in their community, in their family networks, but all the lives lost together have a global impact in their places of origin, in the countries where they died.” These are not isolated numbers, they are a collection of deaths shared by the same people responsible, people who have lost their lives as a result of policies applied to certain populations in a movement. ”

Canaries, the deadliest

The Atlantic route – the one that tries to reach the Canary Islands – is still the deadliest, with 1,784 deaths, according to the NGO. Caminando Fronteras believes that the reasons for the large number of deaths are the boats used “too small for the ocean”, as well as “long distances, political relations between the countries of the region, which prevent cooperation to protect the right. Living between countries and “delays in the activation of the rescue service”.

The Alboran and Strait routes are less traveled roads, but in 2022, 75 and 25 people died respectively. The non-governmental organization, which analyzed a total of five shipwrecks in the area, believes that “failure to assist” is common on this voyage. “Rescue means are not activated, or they are activated too late in relation to the warned ships,” the organization said.

“On August 13, at dawn, three boys left Kariat on jet skis. Their families informed us in the afternoon and said that three other motorcycles also left the same place with an unknown number of people on board. We called Salvamento Maritimo Almeria, who informed us of the arrival of two people. We didn’t know if any of the search methods were activated. The next day another jet ski was rescued, with three people, and we gave the boy’s name, KB, whose family gave us permission to search. However, we have not received confirmation that he has arrived or not, nor has his family. Since then K.B. And two of his companions remain missing,” the story is taken from the collective’s helpline.

Along the route, which starts in Algeria and reaches the coasts of Murcia, Almeria, Valencian Community and the Balearic Islands, according to the group, 464 people have died or gone missing. However, the NGO warns that it is an “invisible” route, so it suspects the number of casualties is much higher. Reasons given by the organization other than “failure to assist” refer to a lack of warning on the part of individuals and families. They warn when it’s too late.

not bodies

Of the victims recorded by the group, 91.42% disappeared at sea, leaving families unable to confirm their loved ones’ deaths. “This means that communities and family members experience a grieving process called ambivalence, which has multiple legal and psychosocial implications,” the document says.

One of those who remained at sea is Z. “We left Mohammadia three days ago. The day before yesterday we lost our engine so we tried to get back to the beach. When the engine fell into the water, Z also fell in, tried to grab the drum and swim, but we lost sight of it. We never heard from him again. Yesterday another colleague remained in the water, we were sinking, we were all in the water, we saw the ship,” explained one of the survivors of the shipwreck that happened in 2022. “We survivors are fine, but you. You should call Z’s wife and explain what happened. I’ve tried to explain it myself but she doesn’t think Z stayed in the water, she says the husband may have been swimming ashore but it’s too complicated. You have to explain to them,” one of the shipwreck survivors tells the NGO hopelessly.

When families have no information about the boat on which their loved ones went missing, grief is made even more difficult. That’s 63 boats that the organization says disappeared in 2022 with all people on board. “When a boat goes missing with everyone on board, it’s much more difficult to get an account of what happened, and it’s more worrying for the families of the people who share that boat. “They lack information about survivors, which in many cases is key for family members to grieve, even if the body is not there,” the study said.

Caminando Fronteras recalls the death of a ship that left Tan Tan (Morocco) on August 10 with 62 people, including ten women and four children. “There were other inflatable boats in the area in those days, but these 62 people were not accommodated. “Many families contacted our organization concerned that they had not heard from their loved ones,” the report said. “About 19 of them sent us photos of their relatives in the hope that we could find them, that we could at least recover their bodies. They wrote from Senegal, Germany, Tunisia, Guinea, Morocco, Spain, Comoros, Ivory Coast, France. Even today, we can only tell them that their loved ones are still missing.”

Source: El Diario





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