Providing dignity in death

Libya: Zawiya, 2 May 2016

From 10 am in the morning until late into the night, volunteer teams from the Zawiya branch of Libyan Red Crescent were on the beaches near their city retrieving the bodies of people who had died at sea while trying to cross from North Africa to Europe. In all, the bodies of 10 women were collected by these volunteers, one of whom was pregnant. Often, these people’s remains are washed ashore in difficult to reach places. The teams do their best to manage the bodies of the deceased safely and with dignity.

More than 27,000 people have travelled from the Libyan coast to Italy so far this. Many die at sea. Just days before these bodies were retrieved, 84 people were reported as drowned in the crossing. Red Crescent volunteers have the difficult task of retrieving the bodies of people who have died attempting to make the crossing, in an effort to provide some dignity to those who would otherwise be easily forgotten.

All images: Mohannad Karimeh / Libyan Red Crescent

← Return to Libya – complex emergency

Also available in: Arabic

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies