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aegean boat
Articles & StatementsImmigration Committee

Boat disaster in the Aegean Sea: Nearly 100 migrants lost their lives

Migrant-filled boat, heading to Italy from the shores of Libya, sank on Wednesday off the coast of Pylos in Greece. Once again, the Aegean Sea witnessed a major humanitarian tragedy. A migrant-filled boat, heading to Italy from the shores of Libya, sank on Wednesday off the coast of Pylos in southwestern Greece.

As of Friday, 78 bodies have been recovered from the sea, and 104 people have been rescued. Hundreds of people are still missing. The survivors were taken to the city of Kalamata and most of them are receiving treatment in hospitals.

It is estimated that around 100 children and a total of 750 people, mostly in their twenties and male, were on board the boat. News sources indicate that the migrants were mainly from Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria, Egypt, and Palestine. Greece declared three days of mourning following the tragedy.

The easiest and at the same time most painful thing is to cry and mourn for innocent people after their deaths. So, who is responsible for so many deaths? In one word, all of us! However, the main reason for this tragedy is the failure of European countries to build safe passage routes. Or it is the unsafety and impossibility of the existing routes.

With the current conditions and the technological capabilities possessed by governments, these people should never have put their lives at risk in this way. People fleeing from war, torture, and persecution should be able to reach a safe place for themselves and their families without endangering their lives.

The United Kingdom, like other European countries, should learn from this incident and abandon hate speech and divisive policies.

Greek television announced that 9 people, including Egyptians, were detained on charges of “human trafficking” related to the incident. According to allegations, the boat departed from Egypt empty of passengers and picked up migrants in the port of Tobruk in Libya with the intention of heading to Italy.

The disaster occurred after the captain and crew abandoned the boat, which had a malfunctioning engine, on a dinghy. Greek authorities established contact with those on board. The individuals on the boat stated that they did not need anything other than water and food and that they wanted to proceed to Italy. However, the boat capsized and sank at 02:04 local time.

The Pylos Prosecutor’s Office initiated an investigation into the accident, and initial findings indicate that the boat was overcrowded beyond its capacity and that the migrants were piled up on the deck.”