Three more migrants drown, Greek coastguard rescues 242

29 October 2015
107 Views

The Greek coastguard rescued 242 migrants when their wooden boat sank north of the island of Lesbos on Wednesday, but at least three drowned, including two small boys, authorities said.

“We do not have a picture of how many people may be missing yet,” a coastguard spokeswoman said.

A man and the two boys were found drowned and an extensive search was under way in the area after what was thought to be the largest maritime disaster off Greece in terms of numbers involved since a massive refugee influx began this year.

More than 500,000 refugees and migrants have entered Greece through its outlying islands since January, transiting on to central and northern Europe in what has become the biggest humanitarian crisis on the continent in decades.

Inflows have increased recently as refugees are trying to beat the onset of winter, crossing the narrow sea passages between Turkey and Greece on overcrowded small boats.

“These praiseworthy attempts of the coastguard to save refugees at sea is at risk of now turning into a constant operation of locating and collecting drowned refugees,” Greek shipping minister Thodoris Dritsas said.

Lesbos, which lies less than 10 kilometres from the Turkish coast in the north Aegean Sea, has been a primary gateway for thousands of migrants entering the European Union’s outermost border.

At a summit last Sunday, EU leaders agreed to cooperate further in handling the crisis, and to provide United Nations-aided housing for 100,000 people, half of them in Greece.

Aid organisations say it barely addresses the problem of ensuring safe and legal routes for people to seek refuge.

“What we don’t need in the wake of this tragedy is another ‘extraordinary’ meeting that leads to a dead end. What would be truly out of the ordinary – but completely necessary – is real and concerted action,” said Gauri van Gulik, Amnesty International’s deputy director for Europe.

 

You may be interested

From Goa to Greece, Airbnb wants the travel-mad Indian millennial to ditch the hotel room
FINANCE
shares1 views
FINANCE
shares1 views

From Goa to Greece, Airbnb wants the travel-mad Indian millennial to ditch the hotel room

Panos - Oct 23, 2017

From roping in Bollywood celebrities to partnerships with local state governments, Airbnb, the online marketplace for accommodation, is trying to…

Brussels Airways flights to Kalamata begin in April 2018
GREECE
shares27 views
GREECE
shares27 views

Brussels Airways flights to Kalamata begin in April 2018

Panos - Oct 23, 2017

Brussels Airways will commence direct flights from the Belgian capital (Zaventem) to Kalamata, in extreme southern Greece, next year. Flights…

Heavy Rain and Storms Expected from Monday
GREECE
shares36 views
GREECE
shares36 views

Heavy Rain and Storms Expected from Monday

Panos - Oct 23, 2017

The weather in Greece is expected to take a turn for the worse on Monday, with an extended dry spell…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.