Body of pregnant woman found on migrant dinghy en route to Spain’s Canary islands

MADRID (Reuters) – A pregnant woman died trying to reach Spain’s Canary islands, the country’s coastguard said on Tuesday, after her body was found on a dinghy carrying around 50 migrants near the Atlantic coast of Lanzarote.

A fishing boat had spotted the migrants near Lanzarote’s Los Cocoteros beach, the coastguard added.

The woman’s body was found in a boat with 42 men, seven women and three children on board, who received red blankets and medical attention after disembarking from a rescue vessel.

Regional TV footage showed emergency services carrying the body of the pregnant woman on a stretcher at the port.

Enrique Espinosa, manager of the Lanzarote security and emergencies consortium, told local TV the migrants were lucky the fishing boat found them because they were adrift.

“There might be more alerts (of arrivals),” he added, as good weather usually increases the number of migrants trying to reach Europe.

On Monday, another trawler spotted a migrant boat near Mogan, in Gran Canaria, with 53 people on board. Three of them were in poor health, the coastguard said.

At least 5,914 people reached the Canary islands between Jan. 1 and June 15 this year, according to Spanish government figures, a 31.5% drop compared with the same period in 2022.

(Reporting by Elena Rodriguez; Additional reporting by Joan Faus; Writing by Emma Pinedo; Editing by Alexandra Hudson)