Seven migrants killed in boat sinking off Turkey coast
ATHENS - The Associated Press
fghan immigrants living in Athens hold candles and pictures of children who died during an incident near the island of Farmakonissi, near the Greek-Turkish border, during a protest in front of the Greek parliament on Feb 7. AFP photoAuthorities in Greece said March 18 they had recovered the bodies of seven immigrants who drowned overnight when a boat sank in the eastern Aegean Sea after traveling illegally from Turkey.
The Merchant Marine Ministry said another eight people were rescued near the island of Lesvos (Midilli). Two of the bodies were found in the water off the coast of the island, while the other five were recovered from their semi-sunken boat.
Authorities were still searching for two more migrants believed missing from the boat. Three coast guard vessels, a helicopter and private boats were involved in the search.
The migrants' nationalities and details of how the boat sank were not immediately known.
Greece is a major transit point for illegal immigration into the European Union, with many making the journey to Greek islands from the nearby Turkish coast in small boats that are often overloaded and unseaworthy.
In January, 12 immigrants, mostly Afghans, drowned when a boat capsized near the eastern Greek island of Farmakonisi.