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A group of North African migrants is rescued at sea / Photo Credit: InfoMigrants

Woman dies after Moroccan navy shoots at boat carrying migrants

Morocco’s navy on Tuesday (25 September) fired on a speedboat carrying migrants, leaving a young woman dead and three other people injured. Naval authorities said the boat had refused to respond to orders.

A total of 25 people were on the boat travelling in waters off the Moroccan region of M’diq-Fnideq. A local official said they were lying down and could not be seen, AFP reports.

The navy patrol was “forced” to fire on the boat when the driver “refused to obey” orders, Moroccan authorities said in a statement.

Four people were injured in the shooting, including a young woman who later died in hospital.

The head of the Northern Observatory for Human Rights, Mohamed Benaissa, said the woman killed was 22 years old and the three injured were also Moroccans, one of whom was in a critical condition with an arm amputated.

Benaissa said Spanish people traffickers were also on board.

The driver of the boat was unharmed and was later arrested. An investigation has begun into the incident.

Morocco is an important route for sub-Saharan Africans trying to reach Europe via Spain.

Since the beginning of September, social media networks in Morocco have featured a large number of videos showing young people heading to Spain in inflatable boats, AFP reports.

Marion MacGregor /InfoMigrants

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