Desert Yields Bodies of 92 Thirst Victims

Thousands try cross-Sahara journey seeking work
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 31, 2013 2:05 AM CDT
Updated Oct 31, 2013 7:22 AM CDT
Bodies of 87 Thirst Victims Found in Desert
A young girl carries an empty container as she walks across the sands to fill it from a well in Barrah, a desert village in the Sahel belt of Chad, Friday, April 20, 2012. UNICEF estimates that 127,000 children under 5 in Chad's Sahel belt will require lifesaving treatment for severe acute malnutrition...   (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)

Earlier reports suggested that about 35 people, apparently migrants seeking work, had died of thirst in a Niger desert—but the remains of more than double that number have been discovered by rescue teams, reports the AP. The 92 highly decomposed bodies appeared to have been scavenged by jackals, rescue worker Almoustapha Alhacen says. At least 48 were children or teens, the BBC reports. The group, whose vehicle broke down, may have been heading for work in Algeria, Alhacen notes. The BBC notes that some 80,000 a year are thought to attempt a similarly dangerous journey across the Sahara, ultimately aiming for Europe. (Read more Niger stories.)

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