Dozens migrants rescued off Lesvos
Dozens of migrants were rescued from a small boat in difficulty off an eastern Aegean Sea island and a search was underway for one more person, Greek authorities said Thursday, as arrivals to the southeastern European country increase.
The coast guard said 43 people were picked up from the small vessel southeast of Lesvos, and three patrol boats were seeking a woman reported by survivors as potentially missing.
Greece was once the main entry point to the European Union for people fleeing strife and poverty in the Middle East and Africa, but it has now been overtaken by Italy and Spain.
Nevertheless, according to United Nations data, about 19,700 people have arrived in Greece since January. That surpasses the total of almost 19,000 for all of 2022. About half arrived in July and August. Most cross to the eastern Greek islands from the nearby Turkish coast.