Eight dead after vehicle carrying suspected migrants crashes into Albanian river

2 April 2024, 15:24

Albania Migrants Death
Albania Migrants Death. Picture: PA

Police questioned a 26-year-old man who had rented the car.

A car crashed into a river in south-eastern Albania, killing all eight people inside – including seven suspected migrants and a local driver, police said.

The driver of the vehicle lost control and veered into the Vjosa River about 150 miles south east of the capital, Tirana, at around 4am local time, according to a police statement.

Seven of the victims were suspected to be “from third countries”, it said, a description police often use to refer to migrants.

Regional police chief Ardian Cipa said the car failed to stop at a police checkpoint and sped away. A police vehicle then followed the car and saw it had crashed into the river.

“It is suspected the driver is from Shkodra and the others are suspected to be migrants who frequently pass this road,” Mr Cipa said, declining to give more details until the investigation is finished.

Shkodra is a north-western city around 185 miles from the accident site.

Police questioned a 26-year-old man who had rented the car.

Albania is not a primary route for migrants but small groups from Arab countries or Asia use it to reach Italy by sea or other neighbouring countries by land.

Petrit Cano, a prosecutor in the southern district of Gjirokastra, said the accident was “the consequence of another criminal offence”.

“Criminal elements in this area try continuously to be involved in this illegal activity, that is the transport of persons who illegally cross the state border and then want to continue their trip to the European Union countries,” he said.

In 2019, Albania became the first non-EU member country to have officers of the bloc’s border agency, Frontex, manage its borders in the south and east, which migrants usually cross, and fight cross-border crime.

Albania’s Parliament in February approved a deal for the country to hold thousands of asylum seekers for Italy.

By Press Association

Latest World News

See more Latest World News

United24 ambassadors

Polish man suspected of aiding Russian plot to assassinate Zelensky arrested

Trump Hush Money

Two jurors dismissed from Trump hush money trial

Indonesia Volcano

Thousands evacuated and tsunami alert issued after Indonesian volcano eruption

APTOPIX Trump Hush Money

Jury selection enters pivotal stretch as Trump’s hush money trial resumes

Croatia Election

Croatia’s conservatives believe majority is close despite inconclusive vote

Fire and smoke rise out of the Old Stock Exchange, Boersen, in Copenhagen, Denmark

Copenhagen and Paris mayors discuss lessons learned after fires wreck landmarks

California Google News

Google fires 28 staff after office sit-ins to protest cloud contract with Israel

A police forensic officer at the Christ the Good Shepherd church in suburban Wakely in western Sydney, Australia

Sydney bishop says he ‘forgives’ alleged attacker after church stabbing

French construction worker Damien Guerot

French hero gains Australian residency for confronting shopping centre killer

Firefighters work on a building that was partially destroyed after a Russian bombardment in Chernihiv, Ukraine (Francisco Seco/AP)

Russia reports downing five Ukrainian military balloons

Police officers clean the debris from an earthquake in Uwajima, Ehime prefecture, western Japan

Strong earthquake in Japan leaves nine with minor injuries, but no tsunami

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump meets with Poland’s President Andrzej Duda

Poland’s president becomes latest foreign leader to visit Donald Trump

German far-right politician of the Alternative for Germany (AfD) Bjorn Hocke, centre, attends his trial in the state court in Halle, Germany

Far-right politician stands trial in Germany over alleged use of Nazi slogan

Belgium EU Summit

EU leaders vow to impose tougher sanctions on Iran as Ukraine pleads for support

Asylum seeker Anicet Mayela pictured outside Campsfield House detention centre in Oxfordshire

Asylum seeker raped 15-year-old girl after his deportation flight was blocked by protesting cabin crew

Skye, a Husky dog, sits near floodwater in Dubai

UAE struggles to recover after heaviest recorded rainfall hits desert nation