Boat with Bangladeshi sinks in Turkey


Seven people died and 64 were rescued when a boat carrying migrants from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan sank on Thursday in eastern Turkey’s Lake Van, the official Anadolu news agency reported.

It is not clear how many of them were Bangladeshis. The foreign ministry and the Red Crescent Society of Bangladesh, which also deals with such issues, could not provide the details immediately when approached on Thursday.

The lake is near the border with Iran. Their final destination was not immediately clear, the Anadolu agency added. 

Turkey hosts more than four million refugees, including some 3.6 million Syrians who fled the conflict raging in their country since 2011.

The flow of refugees crossing to Europe from Turkey has dropped since an agreement concluded in 2016 between Ankara and the EU.

The incident happened at around 03:00 local time (00:00 GMT). It was not clear why they were on the boat in the lake, which is completely within Turkey, according to BBC.

The boat sank after capsizing as it approached Adilcevaz district in Bitlis, on the northern shores of the lake, the governor's office said.

Five people were found dead at the scene and two died at hospital. Turkey has been a key transit point for migrants trying to reach Europe, many of them fleeing violence and persecution in their home countries.  

Many rely on people's smugglers and face dangerous land and sea routes which often result in deaths, bbc reports. Turkey's security forces have held some 441,532 undocumented migrants on its territory this year, according to state-run Anadolu news agency.