World

Sicilian city to bury 49 migrants who died at sea in the crowded hold of smugglers' boat

  • A woman is helped as she disembarks from the Croatian Coast Guard ship SB72 Andrija Mohorovicic at the Augusta harbor, near Siracusa, Sicily, Italy, Sunday, Aug. 16, 2015. At least 40 migrants died Saturday in the hold of an overcrowded smuggling boat in the Mediterranean Sea north of Libya, apparently killed by fuel fumes, and some 320 others aboard were saved by the Italian navy, the rescue ship's commander said. (AP Photo/Carmelo Imbesi)

    A woman is helped as she disembarks from the Croatian Coast Guard ship SB72 Andrija Mohorovicic at the Augusta harbor, near Siracusa, Sicily, Italy, Sunday, Aug. 16, 2015. At least 40 migrants died Saturday in the hold of an overcrowded smuggling boat in the Mediterranean Sea north of Libya, apparently killed by fuel fumes, and some 320 others aboard were saved by the Italian navy, the rescue ship's commander said. (AP Photo/Carmelo Imbesi)  (The Associated Press)

  • A migrant sits after disembarking from the Croatian Coast Guard ship SB72 Andrija Mohorovicic at the Augusta harbor, near Siracusa, Sicily, Italy, Sunday, Aug. 16, 2015. At least 40 migrants died Saturday in the hold of an overcrowded smuggling boat in the Mediterranean Sea north of Libya, apparently killed by fuel fumes, and some 320 others aboard were saved by the Italian navy, the rescue ship's commander said. (AP Photo/Carmelo Imbesi)

    A migrant sits after disembarking from the Croatian Coast Guard ship SB72 Andrija Mohorovicic at the Augusta harbor, near Siracusa, Sicily, Italy, Sunday, Aug. 16, 2015. At least 40 migrants died Saturday in the hold of an overcrowded smuggling boat in the Mediterranean Sea north of Libya, apparently killed by fuel fumes, and some 320 others aboard were saved by the Italian navy, the rescue ship's commander said. (AP Photo/Carmelo Imbesi)  (The Associated Press)

  • The Croatian Coast Guard ship SB72 Andrija Mohorovicic arrives at the Augusta harbor, near Siracusa, Sicily, Italy, Sunday, Aug. 16, 2015  to disembark rescued migrants. At least 40 migrants died Saturday in the hold of an overcrowded smuggling boat in the Mediterranean Sea north of Libya, apparently killed by fuel fumes, and some 320 others aboard were saved by the Italian navy, the rescue ship's commander said. (AP Photo/Carmelo Imbesi)

    The Croatian Coast Guard ship SB72 Andrija Mohorovicic arrives at the Augusta harbor, near Siracusa, Sicily, Italy, Sunday, Aug. 16, 2015 to disembark rescued migrants. At least 40 migrants died Saturday in the hold of an overcrowded smuggling boat in the Mediterranean Sea north of Libya, apparently killed by fuel fumes, and some 320 others aboard were saved by the Italian navy, the rescue ship's commander said. (AP Photo/Carmelo Imbesi)  (The Associated Press)

Officials in Catania, Sicily, say 49 migrants who died in the crowded hold of a smuggling boat will be buried in a local cemetery.

Deputy Mayor Marco Consoli says the bodies are expected to arrive Monday in Catania, an Italian port.

On Sunday, a Norwegian vessel participating in a European rescue-and-patrol mission in the Mediterranean was bringing the bodies and more than 300 survivors from the boat toward Sicily. The migrants were rescued Saturday by an Italian navy ship.

Navy officials said an initial inspection indicated the victims, at first estimated to number over 40, died from inhaling exhaust fumes. Survivors say places on the boat's deck and life vests go to migrants who can afford to pay smugglers more.

At least 2,300 migrants have died at sea this year.