Human Trafficking: 18 Somali migrants suffocate in a cramped container trunk


A total of 18 Somali nationals have died in the Democratic Republic of Congo after traveling from neighbouring Zambia in a container truck packed with fish, in an apparent case of human trafficking gone wrong, Zambian police say.

The Truck registered AFB 496 from Kasama was carrying over 50 Somalians suspected to be trafficked from Tanzania.The final destination of the victims is unclear at this stage. The photos are so sad! *viewer discretion advised*



The Truck carried bags of beans in front but had Somalians hidden behind. Apparently passers-by are said to have forced the driver to open the truck when they heard noises coming from the truck.



At the scene, 20 Km from Levy Mwanawasa Bridge in Chembe, bodies were found strewn on the ground and over 30 survivors narrated that they were transferred from another truck and were picked from Kasama but the new truck had no ventilation which made their colleagues suffocate to death. The driver is detained by Police on the Congo side.



Hudson Namachila, the Luapula province police commissioner, said 11 suffocated to death in the truck while another seven later died after the authorities in DR Congo rejected help from Zambia.




In Chembe, bodies were found strewn on the ground and over 30 survivors narrated that they were transferred from another truck and were picked from Kasama but the new truck had no ventilation which made their colleagues suffocate to death.



Speaking to BBC’s Kennedy Gondwe in Lusaka, Mr Namachila said that DR Congo had now shut the border with Zambia and had arrested the two Zambian drivers and the Somalis who had survived the journey

Tom Lori Published by Tom Lori

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