Three members of a Greek rescuers , along with three members of a Libyan family, tragically lost their lives in a road collision. This incident occurred while the rescue team was en route to the flood-stricken city of Derna on Sunday. Their bus collided with a car carrying the Libyan family, resulting in serious injuries to two occupants of the car and eight individuals on the bus, as reported by a Libyan official.
Authorities have initiated an investigation into this devastating accident. Othman Abdeljalil, the Health Minister of the eastern Libyan administration, disclosed during a press conference that the team had been traveling from Benghazi when the crash occurred. While he stated a death toll of four, Greece’s armed forces reported three fatalities and two individuals as missing.
Two Rival Governments
It’s worth noting that Libya remains divided between two rival governments: a UN-backed administration in Tripoli and a competing authority supported by Egypt based in Benghazi.
Greek authorities reported that a bus carrying medical personnel collided with a vehicle moving in the opposite direction. They confirmed the loss of three members of Greece’s humanitarian mission, with two individuals still unaccounted for. The circumstances surrounding the incident remain unclear, and Greek authorities are working in collaboration with Libya to investigate further. Simultaneously, efforts are underway to repatriate their personnel.
According to a diplomatic source cited by the Greek news site Kathimerini, the team consisted of 16 Greek rescuers and three interpreters. They were on their way to join existing teams in the area, which included contingents from France and Italy.
This tragic incident occurred in the wake of a devastating storm that resulted in the breach of two dams above Derna a week prior. The United Nations has reported a death toll of approximately 11,300 as a result of this catastrophe. Data from the UN‘s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs officially lists over 10,000 people as missing.