One dead as migrants swim for Lesvos shore

One illegal immigrant drowned off the coast of Lesvos early yesterday and another was feared dead after a group of migrants was pitched into the sea by people smugglers just off the eastern Aegean island and told to swim ashore. The Merchant Marine Ministry said coast guards found 32 survivors on the beach at Tsonia, in northern Lesvos. The 27 men and five women were all Africans, although their exact nationalities were not made public. Survivors said two of their fellow travelers had failed to reach the beach. A search revealed the corpse of one man, but no trace was found of the second. The group had been ferried over from Turkey in a wooden boat. On January 29, at least five people drowned and another 14 were missing, feared dead, after a yacht carrying 45 illegal immigrants sank in a storm off the islet of Petalioi, near Karystos in southern Evia.