Nearly 800 undocumented migrants were detained in the Aegean Sea on Friday amid reports that the European Commission is set to propose plans for the redistribution of 40,000 asylum-seekers across the European Union.
Coast guard officers early Friday detained 166 irregular migrants at the port of Lesvos. Off the same island, authorities rescued and subsequently detained 29 people aboard a sinking dinghy, and intercepted another 53 on two separate inflatable vessels. Another 66 people were discovered walking on a mainland road.
Also on Friday, authorities detained 147 irregular migrants aboard four inflatable boats off the northeastern coast of Kos, while 168 were arrested off Chios.
Another 34 people were rescued and then detained from a sinking inflatable boat off the northeastern coast of Samos. Yet another 80 were detained in two separate incidents off the island’s coast.
Soldiers on the tiny island of Farmakonisi discovered 48 migrants.
There was no report on their nationalities.
Meanwhile, according to a plan seen by Reuters on Fridayr, the EU’s executive is expected to propose next week that 40,000 asylum-seekers who have reached Greece and Italy by boat, be relocated across the bloc to ease pressure on the two Mediterranean nations on the edge of the porous EU border. The EU plan, which is expected to be finalized on Wednesday, needs approval from the majority of nations slated to host the refugees.
A blueprint unveiled in Brussels earlier this month also foresaw migrant quotas based on population, national income and employment levels.