Sunday 19 May 2019
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business-standard - 3 days ago

Bangladesh launches trafficker crackdown after Mediterranean deaths

Bangladesh authorities have launched a crackdown on suspected people-smugglers masquerading as travel agents after dozens of Bangladeshis drowned while trying to cross the Mediterranean into Europe, officials said Thursday. About 60 people died last week when a boat full of would-be migrants capsised while trying to cross from Libya to Italy, in a case that has put the spotlight on the desperate struggle of young unemployed Bangladeshis to find work abroad. Fourteen Bangladeshis were among 16 people rescued by Tunisian fishermen, while Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen said 39 Bangladeshis were unaccounted for. Families of those who died said the so-called travel agents took money from youths in exchange for a passage to Libya and the promise of a sea crossing to Europe. Authorities sealed off 23 travel agencies in northeastern Sylhet district after it was found many were working for international trafficking networks, Momen said. We will take stern action against these agents, he

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