More than 1,800 people have died on the Mediterranean route – the deadliest in the world – double the number of deaths last year.
A child is one of two migrants found dead after a boat capsized off the coast of Tunisia.
The boat carrying 20 Tunisians sank on Saturday just 120 meters (395 feet) off the coast of Gabes, the coastguard said.
“Two bodies were recovered, one of a 20-year-old man and the other of an infant,” it said in a statement.
Five passengers were lost and 13 were rescued.
Gabes authorities have started an operation to “determine the circumstances of this tragedy”, they said.
The incident occurred during a spike in migrants and refugees trying to reach Europe, with Tunisia a major landing point for those making the journey to the continent across the Mediterranean Sea.
According to the International Organization for Migration, more than 1,800 people have died, double the total of last year, on the route – the deadliest in the world.
Adamant about coming to Europe
On Wednesday, 41 people died after a boat capsized off the coast of the Tunisian city of Sfax, a major migrant launchpad. Four survivors were taken to the Sicilian island of Lampedusa.
Upon hearing the news of the sinking, some Tunisian migrants, many of whom had escaped the appalling conditions of sub-Saharan Africa, said they were determined to reach Europe.
Tunisia’s withering economy combined with an outbreak of racist violence, sparked by a speech made by President Kais Saied in February, has increased the urgency for refugees to leave Europe.
In July, several Black refugees, living in Sfax and planning to sail to Europe, were evicted from their homes following the death of a local man believed to be involved in attacks against refugees.
Dozens were rounded up and deported to Tunisia’s borders with Libya and Algeria, abandoned in the scorching heat of the desert by Tunisian authorities. On Wednesday, 27 were found dead on the Libyan border.
Last month, the European Union signed an agreement with Tunisia on a 105 million euro ($115m) aid deal to prevent migrant boat departures.