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#5327: Five bodies found in Haitian boat off Bahamas (fwd)

From: JRAuguste1@aol.com

Five bodies found in Haitian boat off Bahamas

NASSAU, Bahamas, Oct 16 (Reuters) - Divers recovered the bodies of five 
Haitian migrants from a sailboat that sank last week in a collision with a 
Bahamian mail boat, and officials put the number still missing at 23 on 

The mail boat was headed for the island of Exuma in the east central Bahamas 
when it collided with the unlighted boat full of Haitian migrants during a 
storm on the night of Oct. 10. 

The mail boat crew rescued 87 Haitians, including three small children, as 
the sailboat sank but did not know how many were missing. Divers have since 
recovered five bodies from the submerged boat, while investigators put the 
total aboard the Haitian vessel at 115, leaving 23 missing and presumed to 
have drowned. 

A Bahamas Defence Force vessel sent to aid the search intercepted two more 
Haitian migrant vessels believed to have been travelling with the one that 
sank. One carried 23 passengers and the other 10. 

``The two smaller vessels were decoys. The skippers who carry illegal 
immigrants hope the larger vessels get through,'' Bahamas Immigration 
Director Vernon Burrows said. ``It's unfortunate that these people decided to 
make this journey and risk their lives at a time when the weather is not good 
and the sea is rough.'' 

The Bahamas, a chain of 700 islands stretching over hundreds of miles (km) of 
Atlantic Ocean from Haiti to Florida, see thousands of Haitian migrants each 
year, most of them fleeing their impoverished homeland in hopes of a better 

10:57 10-16-00

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