[QODLink]
Europe

One dead as dozens found in UK container

Thirty-five in hospital with "significant health problems" after being found in shipping container east of London.

Last updated: 17 Aug 2014 05:40
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback

Emergency officials say a dead man and 35 survivors, including women and children, have been found inside a shipping container being unloaded in eastern England.

They were found inside the container at Tilbury Docks in Essex, east of London on Saturday.

Workers at Tilbury, the main port for the capital, made the discovery on board a P&O cargo vessel that had arrived from Zeebrugge port in Belgium. Officials reported hearing banging sounds.

The East of England Ambulance Service said it sent seven ambulances and other emergency teams to treat the immigrants for hypothermia and dehydration. The 35 survivors were transferred to three hospitals.

Because a body was found, Essex Police have launched a homicide investigation.

Of 64 containers aboard the P&O ship that arrived early on Saturday, police have opened 30 so far to check for any other people.

'Screaming and banging'

"Staff here at the port became aware of screaming and banging coming from a container," police superintendent Trevor Roe told reporters.

"As a result of that noise, staff were alerted and immediately breached the container to find 35 persons within that unit.

"We believe them to come from the Indian subcontinent."

Roe revealed that the survivors were recovering "fairly quickly in most cases" at nearby hospitals.

P&O Ferries said the container arrived on the quay in Zeebrugge around an hour before it was loaded onto the ferry.

Two hours later, the ship began the eight-hour overnight crossing. The people were discovered on the ship's arrival in Tilbury.

Justice pledged

Roe said the police investigation would look into "the gangs or whoever may be involved in this conspiracy to bring these people in this way over to this country.

"Clearly we need to try to bring them to justice."

Tilbury, on the River Thames, is primarily a bulk cargo and container port and not such a prime target for immigrants as those on the south coast, such as Dover.

In 2000, 58 Chinese immigrants suffocated to death after the air vent to their sealed container on a truck was closed on their way to Dover.

In July last year, British police arrested two people after 15 asylum seekers were found hidden in a tanker on board a ferry at Dover.

And in June, eight immigrants, all Afghan nationals, were rescued from the English Channel when their small boat lost power.

386

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Muslim volunteers face questioning and threat of arrest, while aid has been disrupted or blocked, charities say.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
ISIL combatants seeking an 'exit strategy' from Mideast conflict need positive reinforcement back home, analysts say.
European nation hit by a wave of Islamophobia as many young fighters join ISIL in Syria and Iraq.
Featured
Lacking cohesive local ground forces to attack in tandem, coalition air strikes will have limited effect, experts say.
Hindu right-wing groups run campaign against what they say is Muslim conspiracy to convert Hindu girls into Islam.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
Muslim caretakers maintain three synagogues in eastern Indian city, which was once home to a thriving Jewish community.
Amid fresh ISIL gains, officials in Anbar province have urged the Iraqi government to request foreign ground troops.