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Smugglers have shipped over 22,000 Africans to Yemen
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2006-11-26 13:42
More than 22,000 people have crossed the Gulf of Aden from Somalia to Yemen this year in rickety smugglers' boats, according to the United Nations.

In a statement received here on Saturday, the UN refugee agency UNHCR said at least 355 died during the perilous voyages and more than 150 others were missing.

"Most new arrivals said they were from southern and central Somalia," the statement said. They "cited an increase in inter-tribal and inter-clan conflicts as reasons and said they feared for their lives. Some of the arrivals said they came from the Ethiopian-Somali border, near Boroma and Hargeisa, where they said there had been recent military activities."

The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has repeatedly warned of atrocities committed by people smugglers, last month reporting the case of five Ethiopians who were beaten by smugglers, thrown overboard and attacked by sharks in view of the others on the vessel.

The refugee agency has called for international actions and donor supports to tackle root causes of the smuggling, including protection for victims and prosecution of smugglers.

Source:Xinhuanet 
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