Greece: Migrant boat had sailed from Libya with 483 folks


ATHENS, Greece — Greek authorities say a dilapidated fishing boat full of migrants that was towed to port after dropping steering in tough seas south of Crete was carrying a complete of 483 individuals who had sailed from Libya.

The coast guard mentioned Thursday that these on board had been Syrians, Egyptians, Pakistanis, Palestinians and Sudanese and included 336 males, 10 ladies, 128 boys and 9 women. They had been all had been transferred Wednesday afternoon to a ferry docked in southern Crete for short-term housing.

The passengers had been crammed right into a 25-meter (82-foot) fishing boat that had set sail from Libya and had been heading to Italy, the coast guard mentioned. Passengers on board made a misery name when the vessel bumped into bother and misplaced steering whereas crusing within the Mediterranean off the southern Greek island of Crete within the early hours of Tuesday.

A serious rescue operation was mounted, involving a Greek frigate, two coast guard vessels, 5 close by service provider ships and two Italian-flagged fishing boats. The hostile climate situations, with sturdy winds and tough seas, prevented the passengers from being transferred to any of the opposite vessels, and the fishing boat was finally towed to a port in southeastern Crete by one of many Italian-flagged fishing vessels.

Migration Minister Notis Mitarachi despatched a letter to the European Fee Tuesday afternoon, requesting that the passengers be relocated to different European Union nations. He confused that Greece and different international locations on the EU’s exterior borders the place many migrants first arrive of their effort to succeed in wealthier European nations “can’t be anticipated to shoulder an ever-increasing burden out of proportion to their respective capacities.”

Tens of 1000’s of individuals fleeing battle and poverty within the Center East, Asia and Africa attempt to make their means into the European Union annually by way of perilous sea journeys. The overwhelming majority head to japanese Greek islands from the close by Turkish coast in small inflatable dinghies or try to cross on to Italy from north Africa and Turkey in bigger vessels.

“Europe should show that it is able to present quick and tangible solidarity,” by shifting new arrivals to different EU international locations quicker and in better numbers than it has carried out to date, Mitarachi mentioned in his letter to the European Fee.

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