Greek authorities say 150-200 migrants adrift in east Mediterranean, 2 ships at hand to help

Greek authorities say a boat carrying 150 to 200 migrants has been located adrift in the eastern Mediterranean Sea, and two merchant ships have reached it to offer help or evacuate the vessel if necessary.

The Merchant Marine Ministry said late Monday that the migrants did not appear to be in immediate danger and weather conditions were good. The vessel was some 95 miles southeast of the Greek island of Karpathos, in international waters.

Greece is a major destination for refugees from Syria and other war-torn parts of the Middle East and Africa, as well as economic migrants, seeking a better life in the European Union.

Thousands enter the country illegally every year, typically risking the dangerous sea crossing from neighboring Turkey in crowded, unseaworthy vessels. Fatal accidents are common.