Another sea rescue operation saves 62 migrants in Greece

Latest incident involved a sailboat in trouble off Kos

15 November, 16:59

    (ANSAmed) - ATHENS, NOVEMBER 15 - Another week in Greece began on Monday with yet another search and rescue operation in the Aegean Sea for Greece's coast guard, with 62 people rescued from a sailboat that issued a distress call near the island of Kos.

    According to the coast guard, the vessel's captain signaled saying that the boat had begun taking in water while sailing in the eastern in rough seas near the remote island of Syrna, south of the island of Kos.

    A German-flagged cargo container ship in the area rescued the 62 people who had been on the stricken sailboat, and there were no immediate reports of any missing people or any casualties.

    "A search and rescue operation for foreigners has been underway since the early hours of the morning today, in the sea area south southwest of Kos, under the coordination of the Unified Search and Rescue Coordination Center LS-EL.AKT," said a media release from the coast guard.

    "Then a flare was fired from the vessel in danger and water inflow into the I/F was detected and the operation to collect the passengers from the German-flagged Container Ship "MSC CADIZ" which had already approached the I/F began the rescue.

    The crew of the F/G safely collected a total of sixty-two (62) foreigners, whom they transferred to an Open Sea Vessel LS-EL.AKT., in the sea area of ;;Akrotiri "KRIKELLO" Kos, and they will be transferred to the Closed and Controlled Migrant Center in Kos. A preliminary investigation is being carried out by the Kos Port Authority, while any developments will be reported with a newer Press Release." As per the media statement, the survivors were later transferred to a coast guard lifeboat and were then transported to the island of Kos. Their nationalities were not immediately known.

    This latest incident is one of many similar occurrences in Greek waterways in recent months, and comes on the back of fresh pleas from the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) for the EU to create "safe pathways" in European waterways in the wake of a series of shipwreck tragedies in Greece.

    In Greece in particular, for every successful search and rescue mission with a happy ending - of which there have been many over the summer and into autumn - there is also a steady stream of tragic shipwrecks as people continue to try to cross the Aegean from neighboring Turkey.

    In September, the two organizations had already called for the EU to create such safe pathways in European waterways after two other fatal shipwreck tragedies near Lesvos and Kithira.

    But nothing has yet come of that plea, and it remains to be seen what actions from EU authorities will be forthcoming after these latest incidents.(ANSAmed). (ANSA).

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