UPDATES DEATH TOLL; REVISES HEADLINE, DECK; EDITS THROUGHOUT
By Magda Panoutsopoulou
ATHENS (AA) – At least 16 people died and dozens have been rescued after a sailboat carrying asylum seekers sank off the Greek island of Paros on Friday.
Paros is part of the Cyclades island group in the Aegean Sea, located approximately 150 kilometers (over 90 miles) southeast of Greece’s capital Athens.
A search and rescue operation is underway in the area and 63 people have been pulled out so far from waters around eight kilometers (five miles) off Paros, authorities said on Saturday.
The Coast Guard said the boat overturned with approximately 80 passengers and efforts are on to find the missing.
Five coast guard vessels, a navy helicopter and a C-130 aircraft are taking part in the operation, along with nine boats that were sailing in the area at the time of the accident.
This was the third such incident in two days in the Aegean Sea.
Early on Friday, the Coast Guard reported that 11 asylum seekers drowned and 90 were rescued near the island of Antikythera, located between Crete and the Peloponnese peninsula.
On Thursday, 13 people died and 17 are missing after another boat carrying asylum seekers sank near Folegandros island.