November 18, 2005

Immigrants found dead on Sicily shore

RAGUSA, Sicily (Reuters) - The bodies of seven immigrants
among a group trying to enter Italy illegally were found washed
up on the shores of Sicily on Friday, Italian media reports

Italian state television and others said the seven, five
men and two women, were found near the town of Scicli di
Pozzallo in southeast Sicily after rough seas and high winds
hit the area.

They were among a group of more than 100 illegal immigrants
who set out for shore after leaving a wooden boat that ran
aground just off the coast.

At least six people were taken to hospital and police were
searching the area for more victims or survivors.

Thousands of illegal immigrants try to enter Italy every
year after making a dangerous sea crossing from north Africa,
often in ships and boats that are not seaworthy.