Greece arrests two survivors of migrant shipwreck over smuggling suspicion from Turkey
Greek authorities have arrested two of the 12 survivors of the migrant shipwreck in the Aegean that left 25 people dead and dozens missing after departing from Turkey last week.
Two men were arrested on suspicion of being the smugglers that had organized the boat trip from Turkey's Izmir coast, Rudaw reported on Sunday.
On Saturday, the Greek Coast Guard recovered three more bodies of the migrants sailing on a boat that was sank off Evia island in the Aegean, raising the confirmed death toll to 25, whom five is children, it said.
Search-and-rescue operation has been ongoing for another 31 other people who is still reported missing.
The sailboat with reportedly 68 migrants on board capsized and sank in Kafireas Strait, between the islands of Evia and Andros on early Tuesday. The survivors that included Egyptians, Afghans and Iranians told the authorities that the boat was departed from Izmir, a western province in Turkey, carrying 68 migrants. None of them were wearing a life jacket, they said. According to Rudaw, a significant number of Kurds were also on the boat.
Migration is a disputed issue between Greece and Turkey where both countries are on a main route into the European Union. Ankara frequently accuses Greece of violent and unlawful migrant pushbacks in the Aegean, describing the act as a crime against humanity. Athens on the other hand, blames Ankara of deliberately encouraging migrants to cross border, despite being obliged to stop them entering Greece, under a 2016 deal signed with the European Union.