Perilous Journey: 26 Teenage Migrant Girls Found Dead in Mediterranean Sea

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Rescuers recover a dead body from the Spanish ship "Cantabria" in the harbour of Salerno, Italy, Sunday, Nov. 5 2017.

For every five men who drown in the rubber boats trying to cross the Mediterranean, six women also die, according to migrant expert Sine Plambech, an adjunct professor at Columbia University.

The bodies of 26 Nigerian women were recovered from the Mediterranean Sea, and Italian prosecutors are probing whether their deaths are linked to sex trafficking.

Italian authorities told CNN that they launched an investigation into the girls' deaths Tuesday, carrying out autopsies to determine whether they had been victims of sexual abuse or torture.

"It's very rare to find a woman who hasn't been abused, only in exceptional cases, maybe when they are traveling with their husband", he said.

"We will need to see whether there are suspects to concentrate on or whether the murder inquiry will proceed against persons unknown", he said.

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Gazzaniga also had to be alert to deny Luka Milivojevic's close-range header and Palace were made to pay for their profligacy.

Sub-Saharan Africans hoping to flee poverty or war have taken advantage of Libya's power vacuum, which has allowed smugglers to operate mostly without restraint.

Women are more likely to drown because they can not swim as well as men or because they sit on the lower levels of the vessels carrying them, away from life jackets, according to a 2012 study published in Sage. Last year, from January to November: 159,467 migrants arrived in Italy and 3,615 people died on the route.

La Repubblica, an Italian medium, reports that a total of 375 migrants rescued from the sea and now in the warship are sub-Saharan Africans from Nigeria, Senegal, Ghana, The Gambia and Sudan. The rescue was one of four that saved about 400 people over the weekend. About 58 per cent of the refugees who have died this year during their cross-border migration have drowned in the Mediterranean, according to the International Organisation for Migration.

The others arrived in Greece, Cyprus or Spain.

Past year the total for Greece was higher than that for Italy.

Since the collapse of Moammar Gaddafi's regime, the number of migrants crossing the Mediterranean from Libya has skyrocketed.