9 migrants drown off Greece

January 5, 2010 12:00 am

, ATHENS, Jan 5 – Greek harbour police said Tuesday they had found the bodies of nine Asian and African migrants over the past five days who drowned while trying to enter by boat from Turkey.

The bodies of the six men and three women were discovered off Greece\’s northeastern port of Alexandroupolis, they said.

Police said the nine had travelled by boat from Turkey and were trying to enter Europe either by Aegean Sea or through the Evros River which exits near Alexandroupolis.

Greece is one of the main points of entry into the European Union for would-be migrants and asylum seekers from war-torn countries in Africa and Central Asia who often make the crossing in small boats or inflatable dinghies.

In October last year nine Afghans, most of them women and children, drowned when the boat they were in sank off the Greek island of Lesbos in poor weather.

Around 512 people have drowned in the Agean Sea trying to enter Greece, most often from Turkey, over the past three years, according to Ahmet Moavia, head of the Greek Migrants Forum.


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