Thursday, April 7, 2011


Milan, Italy (CNN) - Rescue crews continued their search Thursday for more than 200 people after the boat they were in capsized in the Mediterranean Sea.  The boat was carrying about 300 people, survivors told rescue officials, according to Italian Coast Guard authorities.  It sank Tuesday about 62 kilometers (39 miles) west off Lampedusa in Maltese waters, the Italian Coast Guard said.  By Thursday, officials had rescued 53 people, and recovered 15 to 20 bodies, he said.  Many of the survivors came from African countries, such as Eritrea, Somalia and Niger, and many others were fleeing the war in Libya.  Italy’s foreign minister has estimated as many as 300,000 Libyans could try to leave and could potentially end up in his country.

Wednesday’s incident was the most dramatic of its kind for some time but many smaller boats carrying migrants have sunk while attempting to reach southern Europe from Africa, killing unknown numbers of refugees and migrants. The incident is the latest in a number of tragic ends in what has become a steady flow of people who set sail from Africa - especially Tunisia - to the Italian island of Lampedusa.  More than 22,000 migrants have landed on Lampedusa in the past few weeks. Though owned by Italy, Lampedusa’s closest shore is Tunisia.  According to International Organization for Migration, the majority of unauthorized immigrants arriving in Lampedusa are Tunisian.  Some 2,000 other African migrants have arrived on the island after sailing from the Libyan coast, the agency said.

Italian rescue vessels resumed their search in the early hours of Thursday for survivors from the boat carrying 370 refugees from Libya which sank south of Sicily a day earlier.  The small boat capsized off the Italian island of Lampedusa. The search is continuing but hopes of finding anyone still alive grow weaker by the hour.  This material world is full of dangers, and there is no guarantee that next we shall get human birth, so now we have wasting no time and quickly take shelter under the Lotus Feets of the Guru and Krishna.

After eight million births we have got this precious human birth, Supreme Lord is pleased by creating human beings because human beings have got the discriminating power between eternal and non-eternal, good deeds and bad deeds, they have got the capability to worship Lord. But other living beings have got no such conscience, discriminating power. ... There is no guarantee that next we shall get human birth. ... By serving Him (Krishna) we serve all.  If we pour water at the root of the tree, all parts of the tree will be nourished; if we give food to the stomach, all parts of the body will be nourished; like that we should have firm faith- by serving Him we serve all.  Without serving Him, Who is the Prime Cause of all causes, we can neither do any good to ourselves nor to others, but only the valuable time of precious human birth will be unnecessarily wasted.

Śrīla Bhakti Ballabh Tirtha Mahārāja :
“Process of Initiation”

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