African migrants turn to deadly sea route as options narrow


This year has seen a spike in African migrants sailing small wooden boats 1000 miles to the Canary Islands as the European Union and African nations cut off land routes to Italy through Libya, Niger and Algeria. Migrants say the deadly passage is one of the only viable options left

 

Assane Diallo is making final preparations for a journey he knows could cost him his life: one thousand miles across open ocean from Senegal to the Canary Islands in a 50-foot wooden boat held together with rusty nails.

 

The 35-year-old fisherman hopes to push off this week from a beach in the capital Dakar with water, dried food and potentially dozens of passengers. He just needs two motors and enough petrol for the week-long journey and also to patch up a three-foot (1 metre) gash in the hull.

 

Diallo is part of…

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