Three dead, 12 missing in migrant boat capsize near Greek island

Ilustrative photo: Onur Coban/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Three people drowned and at least 12 are believed to be missing in a migrant shipwreck off the island of Mykonos, the Greek coast guard said on Friday.

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The bodies of two women and a man were found during a search effort that began in the early hours of Friday after a boat capsized in the Aegean Sea off Mykonos, the coast guard said.

Two men, a Syrian and a Palestinian, were rescued, and according to their accounts a total of 17 people were on board the boat, a coast guard official said.

Four coast guard vessels and three helicopters have fanned out in a search and rescue mission, the official added.

Dangerous journey

Greece has long been one of the main entry points into the European Union for refugees and migrants from Africa, Asia and the Middle East.

Most cross on inflatable boats from Turkey to outlying Greek islands, a short but perilous journey during which thousands have died.