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News > Greece

Hundreds Feared Dead After Migrant Vessel Sinks Off Greece

  • Migrant boat disaster survivor, June 15, 2023.

    Migrant boat disaster survivor, June 15, 2023. | Photo: Twitter/ @angela__mauro

Published 16 June 2023

"It is clear that the current approach to the Mediterranean is unworkable," the UNHCR and the IOM said.

On Friday, officials confirmed that 104 people have been rescued and 78 bodies were recovered after a fishing boat carrying migrants capsized off the coast of Greece on June 14.


Three Days of National Mourning for Shipwreck Victims in Greece

Hundreds of migrants, including women and children, remain missing and feared dead, the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) said in a joint statement.

The two agencies said that search and rescue at sea is a legal and humanitarian imperative, and called for urgent and decisive action to prevent further deaths at sea following this latest tragedy in the Mediterranean, the worst in several years.

"The European Union must put safety and solidarity at the heart of its action in the Mediterranean. In view of the increased movements of refugees and migrants in the Mediterranean, collective efforts... are essential to save lives," the joint statement said.

"It is clear that the current approach to the Mediterranean is unworkable. Year after year, it continues to be the most dangerous migration route in the world, with the highest fatality rate," it added.

The boat was reportedly in distress since the morning of June 13. A large-scale search and rescue operation was announced by the Hellenic Coast Guard on the morning of June 14, after the boat capsized.

The fishing boat sank in the Ionian Sea capsized after the Coast Guard tried to tow it with a rope, according to reports from the survivors of the accident.

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