Eight people found dead aboard a boat in Maltese waters

Archive – Migrants from the «Open Arms» disembark in Lampedusa (ARCHIVES) – Friedrich Bungert/SeaWatch/dpa

At least eight people have been found dead on board a boat rescued in Maltese waters by the Italian Coast Guard, in which dozens of North African nationals were on board, Italian authorities said.

A Coast Guard patrol near the island of Lampedusa came across the boat late on Friday, after which they rescued 46 people who were still alive and recovered the bodies of the deceased, reported ‘Corriere della Sera’.

Among the eight people who lost their lives were three women, one of whom was pregnant, according to the Coast Guard.

Hours earlier, the mayor of Lampedusa, Linosa Filippo Mannino, accused the Italian government, led by the far-right Giorgia Meloni, of leaving the local administration alone to manage «this terrible tragedy».

«I appeal to the Prime Minister, Giorgia Meloni. Do not leave us alone to manage this enormous tragedy. Help us, we can’t do it anymore», Mannino asserted, as reported by ‘Agrigento Notizie’.