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Boat with 300 on Board Sinks in Mediterranean Sea

Rome, April 20 (RHC)-- A sinking boat carrying more than 300 people in the Mediterranean Sea has dispatched a distress signal amid fears that at least 20 have died in the disaster. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) reported receiving the signal on Monday, saying the call had come from one of three boats floating near each other.

Also on Monday, the European Union foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, called for “immediate” action in the 28-member bloc in the wake of a recent ship accident that killed hundreds of migrants, intending to reach Europe, in the Mediterranean Sea.

On Sunday, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said at least 700 people were feared dead after a ship smuggling migrants capsized in the Mediterranean on April 16th.

About 170,000 migrants entered the EU via Italy in 2014, and with the current trend, the number is expected to rise in 2015. Italy, which has borne the brunt of the migrant arrivals, has complained about the lack of enough action on the part of its EU partners over the issue.

Sunday's tragedy came after a week in which two other migrant shipwrecks left an estimated 450 people dead. If the worst fears about the tragedy are confirmed, it would take the death toll since the start of 2015 to more than 1,600, sparking calls for immediate action.

Edited by Ivan Martínez
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