A new rise in the death toll of the migrant boat victims off the Syrian coast

The Secretary-General of the High Relief Commission in Lebanon said that the number of victims of the sinking of an asylum seekers boat off the Syrian coast has risen to 94, while the Lebanese army announced the arrest of a person it said was responsible for the trip.

The Lebanese army reported the arrest of the person responsible for smuggling what it described as irregular migrants via the boat that sank off the Syrian coast of Tartus last Thursday.

The army added in a statement that investigations proved the arrestee’s involvement in managing a smuggling network for irregular migrants, and explained that the arrested person admitted his responsibility for the smuggling operation using the sinking boat. Meanwhile, government officials stressed the need to find solutions to what they described as illegal flights, and considered it a regulated industry.

The boat had set off a few days ago from the coast of northern Lebanon, carrying irregular asylum seekers of Lebanese, Palestinian and Syrian nationalities, and their destination was one of the European countries.

According to the official Syrian TV, the boat was carrying at least 150 people before it sank last Thursday, which means that dozens are still missing.

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