“Media reports that 70 people died, mostly Ethiopians, while being ferried to Yemen is baseless,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Dina Mufti told The Anadolu Agency on Wednesday.
Media reports earlier said that around 70 Ethiopian migrants had drowned off southwest Yemen’s coast earlier this month.
Mufti said that the Ethiopian embassy in Yemen mustered support from the Yemeni 17th Brigade and “conducted extensive search on a perimeter of 250– 300-km at coastal areas such as Bab-el Mendab, Dubab and Muha”
“[It] proved that no boat capsized or sunk and no life lost,” he said.
The spokesman said that “The falsified reports may be part of the usual propaganda targeted at Ethiopia’s development and democratization.”
Yemen is viewed by many migrants as a gateway to the Middle East or Europe.
The UN refugee agency said in October that more than 200 people had died at sea in 2014 while attempting to reach Yemen.