MANAMA, Bahrain (AP) — A boat carrying 85 African migrants capsized in the Gulf of Aden off the coast of Yemen, drowning at least 13 passengers, the U.S. Navy said Monday.
A ship belonging to the U.S.'s Bahrain-based Fifth Fleet discovered the overcrowded boat Sunday, rendered assistance and began towing back to Somalia from where it originated.
The Navy said that while transferring humanitarian supplies to the boat on Monday, it began to take on water and sink as the passengers rushed to one side of the vessel.
All passengers were thrown overboard and eight people remain missing.
The United Nations says an estimated 74,000 Africans, mainly from Ethiopia and Somalia fled to Yemen as refugees in 2009.
Most cross the Gulf of Aden in rickety and overcrowded vessels run by smugglers.