ATHENS, Greece – Developments as tens of thousands of people fleeing war and poverty in their homelands embark on a quest to seek safety in Europe. All times local.
Greek authorities say they have rescued a total 1,624 refugees and economic migrants who entered the country in dozens of frail boats from neighboring Turkey over the past three days.
The coastguard said Monday that the migrants were picked up at sea in 47 incidents near Greece's eastern Aegean islands of Lesbos, Kos, Chios, Samos, Leros, Agathonissi and Farmakonissi.
Greece is the main entry point to the European Union for hundreds of thousands of people fleeing war and poverty in the Middle East and Africa. The vast majority pay criminal gangs to smuggle them to the eastern islands.