Foreign Office (FO) Spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal on Friday said the government was making efforts to bring the bodies of Pakistanis, who were aboard a boat that sank near Libya, in next three days.

At least 33 Pakistanis were on board a ship that sank near Libya last week. The spokesman had earlier said that information regarding the deceased Pakistanis was provided by a rescued survivor to the Pakistani mission in Libya.

Faisal had quoted the survivor as saying: “I, along with 32 other Pakistanis, was brought to the boat that was waiting in the deep sea off the coast of Zuwara.”

During the weekly briefing, Faisal said arrangements were made by the Pakistani mission in Libya to bring back the bodies of Pakistanis drowned in the shipwreck.

An emergency cell has been established in this regard and funds have been allocated, he said, adding that families of 11 deceased Pakistanis have been asked to receive the bodies of their loved ones.

The tragic incident took place on the night of Jan 31, according to the survivor who came in contact with the Pakistani Embassy in Libya.

According to media reports, 90 migrants were feared dead in the incident. For years, Libya has been a major transit route for migrants trying to reach European countries by sea.

Most of deceased belonged to Gujrat and Mandi Bahauddin in Punjab.

The deceased have been identified as Muhammad Ismael, his wife Azmat Bibi and their son Saad Ali, Luqman Ali, Rehmat Khan, Kamran Iqbal, Zabiullah, Hamza Farooq of Gujrat, Ikramul Haq, Muhammad Qasim, Muhammad Farhan and Muhammad Tanzeel of Mandi Bahauddin, Mirza Ghulam Fareed, Waleed and Shah.

Earlier, the FO spokesman said that the boat, which was in a bad shape, was supposed to transport the illegal migrants to Europe. The survivor was rescued by a fisherman. “The recovered bodies have been preserved and will be sent to Pakistan in a process which could take up to seven days,” the spokesperson has said.

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