Shipwreck in Greece: About 50 migrants missing

Shipwreck in Greece: About 50 migrants missing

The Greek Coast Guard is conducting a search on Wednesday for dozens of people still missing after a ship sank off the coast of the Carpathian island in the southeast Aegean. According to the statement released by the institution, “To date, 29 people, including Afghans and Iraqis, have been rescued. The search continues because between 60 of 80 people were on the sunken boat,” a Coast Guard media official said.

The boat capsized and sank off the coast of the Carpathian island between Rhodes and Crete, Coast Guard spokesman Nikos Kokkalas told Greek public television. He added that rescue workers’ work was hampered by strong winds of 40 km/h to 50 km/h.

The rescue operation was ordered in the early hours of Wednesday by Navy Minister Yannis Plakiotakis after he was briefed on the incident. Four boats sailing in the area of ​​the wreck, two Coast Guard patrol boats and a Hellenic Air Force helicopter are involved in the search for the missing.

The ship had left the city of Antalya, which is in southern Turkey and not far from the Greek islands of the Aegean. The destination of the ship is Italy, the Greek authorities said.

The dangerous crossing between the Greek islands and the Turkish coast in the Aegean Sea in the eastern Mediterranean results in the deaths of many migrants and refugees trying to reach Europe aboard makeshift boats, often to escape war and misery.

According to the International Organization for Migration (IOM), 64 people have died in the eastern Mediterranean since January 2022, up from 111 in 2021. The number of migrants and refugees arriving in Greece, mainly from Turkey, is down, according to the Greek authorities year increased.

Athens accuses Ankara of turning a blind eye to human traffickers and allowing migrants to enter Greece, in violation of a March 2016 deal that obliges Turkey to reduce migration from its territory in exchange for European financial aid. Turkey denies the allegations.

The latest shipwreck in the Aegean happened on June 19 when eight people died on the Greek island of Mykonos and 108 were rescued by the Greek Coast Guard, according to the IOM.

1 of 2 rescuers search for migrants after shipwreck in Greece Photo: Coast Guard/Reproduction

Rescue teams search for migrants after shipwreck in Greece Photo: Coast Guard/Reproduction

2 of 2 rescuers search for migrants after shipwreck in Greece Photo: Coast Guard/Reproduction

Rescue teams search for migrants after shipwreck in Greece Photo: Coast Guard/Reproduction