79 Die, And Hundreds Go Missing After Overloaded Boat Sinks Off The Greek Coast

The coastguard of Greece reported that at least 79 migrants lost their lives after the boat they were on capsized and eventually sank off the Peloponnese, while almost 100 individuals were rescued.

The accident took place in international waters of the Ionian Sea and called for an extensive rescue operation that was complicated by strong winds, the coastguard reported. With navy vessels, the operation also included a helicopter, an army plane, and six other boats in that area.

Video Credits: Daily Mail / YouTube

The coastguard mentioned that a surveillance plane associated with Europe’s Frontex firm had first seen the boat on Tuesday afternoon, but those on the boat refused to seek help.

It later mentioned that no one on board wore life jackets and did not reveal their nationalities.
Relevant authorities mentioned that it appeared that the migrants had set sail from Libya and were headed toward Italy.

Also on Wednesday, the port police of Greece informed that a sailboat, which was in distress loaded with nearly 80 migrants off Crete, was successfully rescued by a coastguard patrol. They were then safely towed to port.

Along with Italy and Spain, Greece has long been the primary landing point for thousands of individuals seeking to reach Europe from the Middle East and Africa.

Greece has also been facing a rise in the number of crossing attempts from Turkey, particularly on southern channels close to the Cyclades islands and near the Peloponnese peninsula, hoping to catch the attention of patrols in the northern Aegean Sea.

Search and rescue operations are typical, but last month the government of Greece came under high international pressure regarding video footage showing the forceful expulsion of many migrants who had been reportedly set adrift at sea.

Greece, as well as other EU member states located on the southeastern and south rim of the bloc state, are unfairly given the task of managing the arrivals of undocumented migrants.

References: India Today, CNN, NDTV

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