At least 22 dead as migrant boat sinks in Aegean

At least 22 people confirmed dead after boat carrying migrants sinks in Aegean Sea

At least 22 people confirmed dead after boat carrying migrants sinks in Aegean Sea

ATHENS, Greece - At least 22 people have drowned, including three children, when a boat carrying migrants to Greece sank off in the eastern Aegean Sea on Monday.

The migrants, whose nationalities have not been identified, were seven kilometers from the island of Samos near the Turkish coast when their boat sank according to Greek officials. 

The Aegean Sea, which lies between Turkey and Greece, is a popular route for undocumented migrants trying to reach Europe. Migrants pay large sums to human traffickers in Turkey to help them travel to Greece and many drown on the crammed, shoddy boats.

Early this year, 21 undocumented migrants drowned in two separate accidents in the Aegean Sea.

A Greek warship with coastguard vessels, three fishing boats and one search and rescue helicopter rescued 39 migrants in the area and have been searching the area for more survivors.

A diver on the rescue operation said they saw at least seven people inside the capsized boat's storeroom. 

According to survivors, up to 65 people were on the boat and one speed boat was accompanying their vessel.

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