More than 30 people are missing after a small migrant boat sank in Yemen waters on Monday, the state-run Saba news agency reported quoting local authorities.
The boat was carrying a total of 49 illegal migrants, but 13 of the migrants were managed to be rescued by the Yemen coastguard.
The incident occurred when heavy winds hit the boat which was packed with other African migrants such as Ethiopians and Eritreans, the state news agency added.
Coastguard officials have said that 35 people believed to be all Somalis have gone missing and search operations are underway.
Every year tens of thousands of Somalis risk their lives crossing the Gulf of Aden to reach Yemen in their search for safety and a better life. Many die atrocious deaths – beaten, thrown overboard, eaten by sharks, drowned or asphyxiated in the hold of crowded smuggler boats.
Impoverished Yemen is mainly used as a transit country, with African migrants often aiming to move on to neighbouring oil-rich Gulf nations to find work.