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One is dead, many are missing as a refugee boat sinks off the coast of Greece | Refugee Stories

Only two out of the 12 people on board were wearing protective clothing, said Coastguard.

At least one person has died, and many more are feared for their safety as a boat carrying refugees and refugees drowned along the shores of Lake Folegandros, an island in Greece.

The body of an unidentified man was found in a search and rescue operation that began on Wednesday when the boat sank 180km (112 miles) southeast of Athens.

Greek coast officials say 12 people, including children, believed to be from Iraq, were rescued and sent to the nearby island of Santorini.

Many survivors said there were 32 people in the boat, but one told authorities it was about 50.

Coastal authorities said four of its ships, two helicopters from the military and aircraft, a passenger plane, five passenger ships and three special ships were involved in the search and rescue operation.

“The survivors boarded the ship that bound the boat. Only two were wearing protective jackets at sea, “coastal security spokesman Nikos Kokkalas told ERT television.

“We always thought things were very difficult, at which point, 50 people were on board.”

Coastal officials said the operation began Tuesday night after receiving reports that a passenger train had lost its engine and then began sailing south of the Folegandros.

Greece is one of the European Union’s most famous destinations for people fleeing conflict and poverty in Asia, the Middle East and Africa. Many people try to cross by boat from the coast of Turkey to the nearby eastern islands of the Aegean Greek.

But with the increase in travel trips and reports of short-term evacuations in Turkey for those who have arrived, many have been trying long routes on larger ships.

Folegandros, one of the southern islands of the Cyclades, does not follow the regular route of smugglers.

Some ships pass through the Greek islands and head for the Turkish coast to Italy.

About 8,500 asylum seekers have arrived in Greece this year, most of them across the northeast border with Turkey, according to data from the International Organization for Migration (IOM), a United Nations refugee agency.

About 1,900 people were killed or missing in the Mediterranean this year when they embarked on a dangerous sea voyage, compared to about 1,500 people last year, IOM protests show.

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