TRIPOLI, Oct. 11 (Xinhua) -- The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on Monday said 16 bodies of illegal migrants were recovered off the Libyan coast.
"Bodies of 16 persons were recovered as 2 boats arrived at Tripoli Naval Base on Monday evening. As many as 187 survivors were provided aid, some in need of urgent medical help by the UNHCR and the International Rescue Committee," UNHCR tweeted.
"The passengers had set off from Zwara and Alkhoms (western Libya) the night before," UNHCR said.
Due to a state of insecurity and chaos, Libya has been suffering since the fall of the late leader Muammar Gaddafi in 2011, and thousands of illegal migrants choose to cross the Mediterranean Sea from Libya to European shores, many of whom died on the way.
According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), a total of 26,314 illegal migrants, including women and children, have been rescued and returned to Libya so far this year, while 474 died and 689 went missing off the Libyan coast on the Central Mediterranean route.