Cruise Ship Saves Dozens of Migrants in Atlantic Ocean

Cruise Ship Saves Dozens of Migrants in Atlantic Ocean

( – Migrants looking to escape their home countries often take dangerous routes. They travel through deserts in high temperatures, violent regions, and international bodies of water. The latter is exceptionally dangerous, mainly because the migrants often don’t have reliable vessels, causing many to die at sea. Recently, a cruise ship rescued dozens adrift in the Atlantic Ocean.

On Thursday, June 20, Oceania Cruises issued a statement to CBS News revealing it had rescued 68 people off the Canary Islands. Its Insignia ship was nearing the end of its half-year trip when it received a distress call about a boat, a canoe-shaped vessel known as a pirogue, drifting near Tenerife. When it arrived, it saw a small fishing boat packed with migrants, five of whom unfortunately died on the vessel. While the crew was able to recover three of the deceased, bad weather prevented them from recovering the other two bodies.

The crew brought the surviving migrants, who were from Africa, “onboard for medical assistance and provided food, drinks, clothing and a safe place to rest,” the company said. At that point, the migrants had drifted at sea between three and four weeks. It’s highly unusual for cruise ships to become involved in rescue missions, but the position of the pirogue put them in grave danger. The Oceania crew placed the migrants in the ship’s lounge, where the cruise typically hosts shows, and the area was closed to passengers. However, many onboard did get involved, donating clothing and shoes to help clothe the refugees.

In January and April, cruise ships also got involved in rescues near Galveston and Cuba, saving 12 and 27 migrants, respectively.

The Canary Islands is a popular landing place for migrants. Last year, more than 55,000 arrived in Spain by sea, most of whom reached the country by accessing the Canary Islands, its southernmost region, just off the coast of Morocco.

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