Three more migrants drown, Greek coastguard rescues 242

29 October 2015
177 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

FYROM Foreign Minister: We were and will remain Macedonians
GREECE
shares74 views
GREECE
shares74 views

FYROM Foreign Minister: We were and will remain Macedonians

makis - Jan 19, 2018

Foreign Affairs Minister of FYROM Nikola Dimitrov clarified that his country’s interests in the negotiations with Greece over the name…

EuroWorking Group gives “go-ahead” for completion of 3rd review
FINANCE
shares79 views
FINANCE
shares79 views

EuroWorking Group gives “go-ahead” for completion of 3rd review

makis - Jan 19, 2018

The EuroWorking Group (EWG) is expected to issue a positive report for the completion of the third review of the…

Tsipras: Solution not only for name dispute, but also to irredentist rhetoric by FYROM
POLITICS
shares89 views
POLITICS
shares89 views

Tsipras: Solution not only for name dispute, but also to irredentist rhetoric by FYROM

makis - Jan 19, 2018

Greek PM Alexis Tsipras said his government was determined to reach a mutually acceptable solution on the name dispute with…

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.