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51 migrants presumed dead after being abandoned in Niger desert

Fifty-one migrants are presumed dead in the Sahara Desert in Niger after smugglers abandoned them during their journey north to Libya, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) said.

The group said 24 migrants from Gambia, Nigeria, Senegal and Ivory Coast alerted authorities days ago that they had been stranded.

The IOM said the survivors were taken to Seguedine, where one died.

They will be transferred to a centre in Dirkou in the north-east of the country on Tuesday.

The survivors said they were in a group of 75 taking three different cars.

The IOM said authorities are searching for the 51 bodies after sand storms.

The group added it has saved more than 600 migrants since April 2016 in Niger, which is a major route for West African migrants making their way towards Europe.



From Belfast Telegraph