Four migrants killed after boat capsizes off Turkish coast
BALIKESİR – Anadolu Agency
A helicopter and several boats were dispatched to rescue the migrants. AA Photo
Four migrants were killed and five others were rescued off the coast near the resort town of Ayvalık, after small boat heading to Greece capsized in the Aegean Sea on Nov. 8.
Rescue workers removed the bodies of four people, including one child, and rescued five migrants who were taken to hospital. The migrants had taken a small boat and sailed from the Ayvalık district of Balıkesir province, hoping to reach the Greek island of Lesbos.
The route between Ayvalık and Lesbos is a popular route among migrant traffickers. On Nov. 6, coast guards captured 41 migrants from Afghanistan, Eritrea and Burma, including women and children, in a boat heading to Lesbos. They were then sent on to the repatriation center in Balıkesir.
Also on Nov. 6, 25 Afghans were killed in a capsized boat off the coast outside Istanbul.
The boat is believed to have been carrying 42 Afghan refugees when it capsized. Officials have stated that 11 of the victims were children, while four were women. The death toll is also likely to climb as 12 people who were in the boat are missing.
Two suspects were detained late on Nov. 4 in the investigation into the boat. Turkish media has reported that the suspects are one Turkish and one Afghan citizen, who are accused of organizing human trafficking around Istanbul.