The bodies were found off Sfax coast. Some 53 people had set out on the weekend aiming to reach Italy, an official said.

A boat is seen at a harbour in the southern island of Kerkenna, where migrants departed from last week before their boat sank. June 4, 2018.
A boat is seen at a harbour in the southern island of Kerkenna, where migrants departed from last week before their boat sank. June 4, 2018. (Reuters Archive)

At least 20 African migrants died when a boat carrying more than 50 people sank off Tunisia, an official said on Tuesday.

The bodies were found off the coast of Sfax, the official said, adding a total of 53 people had set out on the boat at the weekend aiming to reach Italy.

Search operation continues

Coast Guard units and the army were searching for the other missing people.

Last year, 86 African migrants drowned after their boat capsized having set off for Europe from Libya, in one of the worst such accidents in Tunisia.

Tunisia is both a transit country for migrants from elsewhere in Africa and a source of migrants trying to reach Europe to build a better life.

Source: Reuters