24-Year-Old Woman Becomes First Channel Crossing Victim To Be Identified

by : Hannah Smith on :
24-Year-Old Woman Becomes First Channel Crossing Victim To Be IdentifiedAlamy

A 24-year-old woman messaged her fiancé to reassure him that she would be rescued as the boat she was attempting to cross the channel in began to sink.

Maryam Nuri Mohamed Amin is the first victim to be publicly identified after the recent tragedy, which saw 27 people drown as they attempted to cross the English Channel. Among the victims were seven women, one of whom was pregnant, and three children.


Amin, a Kurdish woman from northern Iraq, had made the dangerous journey in an attempt to reunite with her fiancé who lives in the UK, along with a female relative who also drowned. Her fiancé revealed that he had been unaware she was planning on attempting the crossing, and that they had been messaging each other on Snapchat when the dinghy began to deflate.

English Channel (Alamy)Alamy

In her last message to him, she had tried to reassure her fiancé that the group would be rescued and that authorities were on their way to help them.

Friends and family made Amin’s identity public after gathering to pay tribute to her at her home in northern Iraq, with her best friend telling BBC News she had ‘a very big heart’.


‘When she left Kurdistan she was very happy, she couldn’t believe that she was going to meet her husband,’ Imann Hassan said. ‘She tried to live a better life, she chose the UK, but she died.’

Maryam Nuri Mohamed AminKurdish IRISH Society/Facebook

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Hassan added that she wanted the world to know ‘that no one deserves to die likes this’.

Only two people on board the dinghy survived after it sank on Wednesday, November 24, in what was the deadliest single incident in the English Channel on record.


The tragedy has prompted renewed discussions about the UK and France’s approach to refugees attempting to cross the Channel.

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Hannah Smith

Hannah is a London-based journalist covering news and features for UNILAD. She's especially interested in social and political activism.

Topics: News, France, Now, UK


BBC News
  1. BBC News

    Channel disaster: Kurdish woman is first victim identified