Three boats carrying migrants that went missing off the Canary Islands according to a non-governmental organization are still missing, with Spanish rescuers unable to locate any other vessels in the area.

Spain’s maritime rescue service, which helped migrants stranded off the Canary Islands on Monday, called for help from ships sailing in the area and sent one of its planes to search that area of ​​the Atlantic Ocean, a spokesman said. her.

“The aircraft carefully searched the area and found nothing,” she added, without specifying whether the search would continue today.

On Monday, Spanish rescuers rescued a boat in the same area with 78 migrants, who were transported to the island of Gran Canaria.

But according to the NGO Caminando Fronteras, which gathers its information from calls from migrants or their relatives, three other boats that had left Senegal and carried a total of more than 300 migrants are still missing.

One of them departed on June 27 from Kafoudin, a small coastal town in southern Senegal, located about 1,700 kilometers off the coast of the Canary Islands, with about 200 people on board.

Spanish rescuers had initially noted that the vessel rescued on Monday appeared to be carrying that number of people and had therefore assessed that it was that vessel. Then they realized their mistake.

The boat rescued on Monday is not one of the three that left Senegal, which have not yet been located, a spokesman for Caminando Fronteras said on Tuesday.

“Every minute counts to find alive the more than 300 people who are on the Senegalese boats (…) We need search tools and better cooperation between Mauritania, Spain and Morocco,” underlined on Twitter yesterday the founder of the NGO Helena Maleno.

Senegal denies

In a statement yesterday, the Senegalese Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated that it was “surprised to learn of the posting on social media of information that spoke of the disappearance of at least 300 Senegalese, would-be immigrants, whose boats left Kafoudin and headed for the Canary Islands ».

“After a check, we came to the conclusion that this information is baseless,” the ministry underlined.

Senegal, and especially the southern part of the country, is one of the departure points for irregular migrants from Africa bound for Europe.

On Monday, the mayor of Kafudin confirmed to AFP that migrants had left the city, of whom there is no news. He explained that among the immigrants are Senegalese, but also citizens of “Gambia, Guinea, Sierra Leone …”.