VAN, Turkey

Another body has been recovered Saturday from a lake in eastern Turkey, rising the death toll from a boat disaster to 61.

The boat carrying dozens of irregular migrants sank in the Lake Van, Turkey’s largest lake, on June 27.

Rescue efforts at the site continue.

Five suspects have been remanded in custody over the incident thus far.

Since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, the number of irregular migrants arriving in Turkey has declined.

However, more than 21,000 migrants have arrived in Van so far this year, according to Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu.

Of them, 16,000 were denied entry but 4,500 managed to enter illegally, he added.

Turkey has been a key transit point for irregular migrants aiming to cross to Europe to start a new life, especially those fleeing war and persecution.

* Writing by Sena Guler and Cansu Dikme

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