Second people smuggling tragedy in Austria narrowly averted: police

Vienna, Sep 5 (IANS) Following the deaths of 71 illegal immigrants in a truck in Austria last month, police have revealed a second similar tragedy was narrowly averted.

“An additional 81 persons were in a similarly deadly predicament in another truck of almost the exact same type as the one found on August 27. The second truck was discovered by police on the same day as the first,” Xinhua news agency quoted police chief for the state of Burgenland, Hans Peter Doskozil, as saying on Friday.

The 81 migrants had also been part of a people-smuggling operation as both vehicles were registered to the same owner. He also said one of the people smugglers in custody in Hungary was behind the organisation of this trip.

However, the second vehicle, a refrigerator truck, had a side door, unlike the one in which the tragedy occurred, which the passengers were able to force open with a crowbar while the vehicle was in motion.

The driver then let them out in the town of Gols near the Hungarian border, not far from Parnsdorf where the initial tragedy occurred.

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