Friday, May 16, 2003

80 feared dead in Gulf of Aden
MOGADISHU, 17, MAY 2003(The News)-- More than 80 Somalis and Ethiopians were feared dead after a wooden boat they were travelling in from Somalia to Yemen was seen floating in pieces in the Gulf of Aden, a Somali diplomat said on Friday.

Passengers of another boat making the same voyage said that they saw 17 bodies, including two they recognised to be crew members, pieces of wood and water barrels from the vessel, said Hussein Haji Ahmed Muhammad, acting consul at the Somali Embassy in Yemen.

Muhammad said that he had spoken to passengers of the second vessel, which made it safely to Yemen. Residents in the north-eastern Somali port of Bossaso said that the boat, called a dhow, which had broken up had left Mareg village, near Bossaso, on Monday with 85 passengers, 40 of them were Somali and rests of 45 were Ethiopians. Yemeni fishermen told Yemeni authorities that they had seen lots of bodies in the sea, Muhammad said. He said that he did not have any further details.

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