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Boat sinks off Greek island, 20 illegal immigrants dead

 
 
 
 
 
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A boat of illegal immigrants on its way to Greece

At least 20 bodies have been retrieved following an incident where a small boat carrying illegal immigrants traveling to Greece capsized near the eastern island of Lesvos.

Officials say the National Greek Coast Guard has found the bodies at sea and is searching for survivors.

The boat reportedly departed from the Turkish coast, carrying at least 27 immigrants and a captain. Officials say the boat capsized on Saturday, as a result of strong winds.

A survivor said all the immigrants were from Iraq and “had paid about 2,000 dollars per head to be transported to the island.”

Officials say women and children were on the boat as well.

In a similar incident earlier this year, over 60 people including children, drowned off Turkey’s western coast, near the Greek island of Samos.

According to official statistics, Greece has become a key transit point for illegal immigrants. Every year tens of thousands of illegal immigrants enter the country.

Most illegal immigrants in Greece are from poor Asian and African countries.

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