Iraq: At least 55 dead after boat capsizes

Mosul: As many as 55 people, including 12 children, were killed after an overcrowded ferry capsized in Iraq’s Tigris River here.

Al Jazeera quoted to health ministry spokesman Saif al-Badr as saying that there were at least 150 people on board, including over 80 women and children.

Nineveh mayor, Abd al-Sattar Habu said that the ferry transporting people from a bank of the river to a small tourist island sank halfway due to high water levels in the river.

He further added that a number of bodies were recovered while search operations are still underway.
Habu said, “The Department of Water Resources warned a few days ago that the level of water will rise as a result of the opening of dams.”

The ferry was loaded with over twice the permitted capacity, Civil Defense General Manager Brigadier Malik Bohan told state-owned Al Iraqiya, reported Al Jazeera.