Rescuers find 87 dead migrants in Niger desert

The dead were mostly women and children.

Soldiers and rescuers have found badly decomposed bodies of 87 migrants in northern Niger.

According to rescue workers, on Thursday, the migrants died while crossing the Sahara on their way to Europe.

The workers said that the migrants, most of them women and children, died of thirst after their vehicles broke down near Niger’s border with Algeria.

“There was a dead woman holding her baby,’’ rescue volunteer, Al-Moustapha Alhacen said.

The migrants had left Arlit, 150 km south of the Niger-Algeria border, in two trucks at the end of September, according to Mr. Alhacen.

A spokesperson for Niger’s army confirmed the number deceased, adding that they included 32 women and 48 children.

The bodies were buried on Wednesday in Assamakka, a small desert town in northern Niger, near a main border crossing with Algeria.

Three days earlier, soldiers found five bodies in the same area, believed to be from the same two-vehicle convoy.

Poverty-stricken Niger forms part of a major migrant route between West Africa and Europe.

(dpa/NAN)



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