a 7-year-old girl died after the sinking of a boat with 16 migrants on board

According to the prefecture, the boat was not sized to accommodate so many people and capsized. The little girl, one of four children, drowned. An investigation is open and “several police custody is underway,” said the prosecution.



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The Aa canal in Pas-de-Calais (Illustrative photo).  (STEPHANE BARBEREAU / RADIO FRANCE)

A 7-year-old girl died after the sinking of a boat with 16 migrants on board, announced the Northern prefecture in a press release on Sunday March 3. “At the beginning of the morning, a small boat with 16 migrant people on board capsized on the Aa canal in Watten. This boat, probably stolen, was not sized to support so many people. It was capsized shortly after the climb of these people”explains this same source.

The prefecture specifies that a couple “whose origin is being determined”, with their four children were on board. “The mother is pregnant.” One of the children, a 7-year-old girl, died “on site, following a cardio-respiratory arrest, attempts at resuscitation by emergency services” having been “vain”, the Dunkirk public prosecutor’s office told AFP. The other members of the family were transported to the Dunkirk hospital center.

Another couple, two men and six young children were also in this boat. “Transported to the hospital center, their lives are not in danger,” adds the Northern prefecture in its press release.

“Several police custody”

“Several police custody is underway”, indicated the prosecution. An investigation was opened for “involuntary manslaughter”, “unintentional injuries”, “criminal association” and “aiding the entry and illegal stay of an organized gang with endangerment of others”, specifies the prosecution. It was entrusted to the research brigade of the Dunkerque-Hoymille gendarmerie and to the National Office for the Fight against Illicit Trafficking of Migrants (Oltim).

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