500 migrants rescued off coast of Canary Isles as four die

Two bodies were found on the boats and two migrants died in hospital.

500 migrants rescued off coast of Canary Isles as four die
A group of migrants in a wooden boat are towed by a Spanish coast guard vessel to the port of Arguineguin, on the island of Gran Canaria, Spain, November 2, 2023. REUTERS/Borja Suarez
The Spanish coast guard migrants to the port of Arguineguin, on the island of Gran Canaria, Spain, on November 2 (Picture: Reuters)

More than 500 migrants have been rescued off the coast of the Canary Islands, said the Spanish Coast Guard.

Two bodies were found among those rescued from four boats off the island of El Hierro, while another two died in hospital.

Women and children were among those saved by both the coast guard and the Spanish Civil Guard, the coast guard said today.

The numbers of migrants who have arrived on the archipelago this year is approaching the record high figure of 31,678 recorded in 2006, when other routes to Europe were blocked off.

Spain’s interior ministry said on Thursday that 30,705 undocumented migrants had reached the Canary Islands in the first 10 months of this year, a 111% increase on the same period in 2022.

It’s thought milder and calmer seas since September have encouraged has prompted more crossings recently, although the journey is still considered perilous.

The Canary Islands accounted for the bulk of the 43,290 undocumented migrants arriving in Spain by sea last year.

FILE PHOTO: A group of migrants in a wooden boat are towed by a Spanish coast guard vessel to the port of Arguineguin, in the island of Gran Canaria, Spain, October 21, 2023. REUTERS/Borja Suarez/File Photo
A group of migrants are towed to Arguineguin on October 21 (Picture: Reuters)

It’s location, around 100km (60 miles) off Africa’s west coast has made it the main gateway to Spain and the rest of Europe for people from countries such as Senegal fleeing conflict or seeking a better life.

Meanwhile, in the UK, a group of migrant men have created a cookbook with 38 recipes and stories of each author’s life.

The 22 men, who come from countries across the world, detail their direct experience of the UK’s immigration system, including loneliness, exclusion and homelessness.

They are all part of a group called GIANT, a support group for migrant men where the book was developed over two years, with a member cooking a dish from their country each week and talking about the significance of food in their lives and culture.

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