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Child Dies As Refugee Boat Sinks Off Turkish Coast

14.12.2015 17:20

One child drowns as more than 100 refugees try to reach Greek island.

At least one child died on Monday after one of three boats carrying refugees sank off Turkey's western coast, Turkish Coast Guard said.

More than 100 Syrian and Afghan refugees in the three boats were rescued by the Turkish Coast Guard.

The three boats were the latest to make the short but perilous sea journey from Turkey's western coast to the Greek island of Lesbos in the Aegean Sea.

The body of 10-year-old Nergis was brought to Dikili State Hospital in Turkey's coastal province of Izmir, the Turkish gendarme said.

Meanwhile, around 65 Syrian and Afghan asylum seekers were  held in Turkey's northwestern province of Canakkale as they attempted to reach Lesbos on Monday, Turkish security officials said.

Thousands of refugees and asylum seekers are still trying to find a passage to western European countries through the Greek islands – the main entry point from the Middle East.

Some 185 refugees children have died in the Aegean Sea between Turkey and Greece in 2015 so far, said UNICEF on Dec. 2.

According to the International Organization for Migration, the total number of people crossing the Mediterranean Sea in 2015 has reached 878,000, which is four times higher than last year.

So far, some 3,563 people have died crossing the Mediterranean; 589 of these deaths have been in waters between Greece and Turkey. - Ankara

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