Nearly 100 migrants missing in Mediterranean after wreck

Story highlights

  • The boat was carrying 110 people, the International Organization for Migration says
  • 2016 was the deadliest year for migrants trying to cross the Mediterranean to Europe

(CNN)Nearly 100 people are missing after a boat carrying migrants wrecked in the waters between Libya and Italy, the International Organization for Migration said Saturday.

Rescuers have found eight bodies and only four survivors from the boat, which was carrying 110 people in harsh sea conditions, organization spokesman Flavio Di Giacomo told CNN.
Many migrants have died trying to make the perilous trip from North Africa to Europe, with Libya being a popular jumping-off point.
The crossing through the Central Mediterranean is considered the world's deadliest migration route.
With too many migrants -- some fleeing war or persecution, others seeking a better life -- crammed into what are often barely seaworthy boats, the journey can be can be treacherous.
"Bodies washing up in Libya is something we often see preceded by a large shipwreck in the Central Mediterranean," Julia Black, who works with the organization's Missing Migrants Project in Berlin, said earlier this year.
2016 closed out as the deadliest year for migrants attempting to cross the Mediterranean Sea to Europe, the group said. A total of 5,079 people died or were reported missing in the open waters.
More than 380,000 migrants made the trip to Europe successfully last year, according to the group.