The Plight Of The African Boat People

Many African refugees are resorting to desperate measures to reach European soil. Hundreds have appeared in The Canary Islands this year alone, usually arriving in overcrowded boats totally unsuitable for long sea voyages.

Those that arrive safely are kept confined in barracks turned in to holding camps for refugees, they are usually deported.

Many people have died attempting to cross the sea to Europe. This article tells of the tragic end of a group of migrants from Senegal, their bodies were found in a boat that had drifted across the Atlantic and arrived off the coast of Barbados, 2800 miles away from home. A note found on one of the bodies reads thus:

"I am from Senegal but have been living in Cape Verde for a year. Things are bad. I don't think I will come out of this alive. I need whoever finds me to send this money to my family. Please telephone my friend Ibrahima Drame. Signed Diaw Sounkar Diemi."

It seems as if the boat had been cut adrift, months before, from a larger vessel and left to it's fate. Many are thought to have been washed overboard before the boat was discovered. One can only imagined the horrors they must have endured.

The author of these words signs off for now, wondering about the man who cut the boat adrift, abandoning it to the mercy of the Atlantic Ocean. Where is he today? And does his conscience torment him?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That's really tragic. I saw some refugees on a recent holiday in The Canary Islands, they must be truly desperate to take to sea in those overcrowded boats.