NEWS

Traffickers toss group into sea

A 15-year-old girl drowned and two others were reported missing yesterday after human traffickers threw a group of illegal immigrants into the sea close to the southern Aegean island of Leros, authorities said. The dead girl was among a group of Kurdish migrants found in waters off the island of Farmakonisi, located near Leros and a short distance from Turkey. Two others, a one-year-old infant and a man, were said to be missing. Nine people, including seven men and two women, were rescued by local boats and taken to a health center on Leros for observation, authorities said. Three coast guard patrol boats and a helicopter were participating in the search operation that continued throughout the day. Earlier this week, authorities detained 145 illegal immigrants, mostly from Iraq, off the coast of Athens who were stranded at sea after the fishing boat in which they were traveling suffered engine problems.

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