Twenty-six victims identified after fatal capsizing of boat in English Channel

Four women, a teenager and a seven-year-old girl are among those identified after the tragedy

A torn dinghy near the beach of Wimereux, on the northern coast of France, from where migrants leave to cross the English Channel. AFP
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The Paris prosecutor said 26 people have been formally identified after the capsizing last month of a boat in the English Channel that cost the lives of at least 27 trying to reach Britain.

The dead included seven women, a teenager and a girl aged 7.

The identity of one migrant remains unknown, Paris prosecutor Laure Beccuau said.

Investigators confirmed the identity of 16 Iraqi Kurds, including four women, a 16-year-old and the girl.

Other victims included an Iranian Kurd, three Ethiopians including two women, a Somali woman, four Afghan men and an Egyptian man, Ms Beccuau said.

The adults ranged in age from 19 to 46.

Their boat capsized on November 24 off the coast of northern France, in what French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin called the biggest migration tragedy on the dangerous crossing to Britain.

Ever-increasing numbers of people fleeing conflict or poverty in Afghanistan, Sudan, Iraq, Eritrea and elsewhere are risking the perilous journey from France, hoping to win asylum or find better opportunities in the UK.

The crossings have tripled this year compared with 2020.

The tragedy prompted a new political crisis between Britain and France, which each accused the other of not doing enough to deter people from crossing the Channel.

European migration officials agreed to send a plane to monitor the shores of the English Channel for migrant activity, and pledged to work together more closely against migrant-smuggling networks.

Updated: December 14, 2021, 10:46 PM