Greece's coast guard says it has rescued 37 migrants from a half-sunken boat drifting in the eastern Aegean.

A coast guard patrol found the boat south of the island of Lesbos early Thursday. Authorities said the migrants, whose nationalities were not immediately established, were taken to Lesbos and arrested for lacking travel documents.

Greece is one of the main entry points for migrants attempting to enter the European Union. Thousands cross from Turkey to nearby Greek islands, often aboard rickety boats.

Last month 12 people, mostly children, died when a boat carrying 28 migrants sank near the island of Farmakonisi. The survivors accused the coast guard of trying to tow their boat back into Turkish waters, and of botching the rescue. The coast guard has vehemently denied the claims.