A speedboat carrying would-be immigrants capsized near Gwadar on Monday, leading to the drowning of four passengers who were en route to Iran. From Iran, the passengers were supposed to head out towards Europe in search of greener pastures.
“Four bodies were retrieved by local fishermen and brought to the District Headquarters Hospital in Gwadar,” District Police Officer (DPO) Gwadar Pervez Umrani told The Express Tribune. He said there could be more bodies waiting to be found.
The speedboat had a capacity of eight to ten people and it could be possible that there were more than 12 people onboard.
Local fishermen said the speedboat sank near the Iranian border. One of the bodies was identified as Mohammed Basheer, resident of Mansehra, in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa. “All the victims belonged to Punjab and K-P and wanted to enter Iran in order to travel to Europe. They were illegal immigrants,” a fisherman who was taking part in the rescue operation said. The bodies were floating when the fishermen spotted them.
According to local officials, dozens of illegal immigrants try to illegally cross the border via speedboat.
“The boat capsized in Iranian territory and the reason for the accident is not yet known,” said a Balochistan Levies official.
Gwadar DPO Pervez Umrani said the incident is being investigated. “Three bodies have not been identified yet,” he said, adding that Levies personnel and police are jointly investigating the incident and looking for more bodies.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 12th, 2014.
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