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Lefkada: Eight adults, four children drowned when boat with immigrants capsizes right off shore

Twelve immigrants – among them four children – were drowned when their boat capsized off the island of Lefkada in the Ionian Sea, just a few meters away from the coast.  Fifteen people manage to rescue themselves swimming to the shore. They have been transferred to hospitals in Lefkada, Preveza and Agrinio.

Among the dead are three boys and one girl between three and six years old.


photo from

According to local media, the authorities were informed about the accident at 6 o’ clock in the morning when one of the passengers called the police to say their boat was in distress. Greek police alarmed the coastguard that rushed to the point.

Local media report that most probably the boat capsized while the immigrants were getting on board in the remote area of Palaira. Authorities speculate that the boat may have capsized due to shift of weight. According to the mayor, the sea was calm when the accident occurred.

According to information from local media, the immigrants were Syrians, the human traffickers two Egyptians and one Greek. The 7-meter long speed boat is claimed to have been recently stolen from a local businessman.

The total number of the passengers is still unknown and divers continue their search.

Meanwhile, one of the rescued immigrants told authorities that the point where they were trying to get on board was full of rocks and deep water. The boat capsized when the group was trying to get on board.

It is not clear whether they were more immigrants to be on board but they disappeared form the area when the accident occurred.

It looks as if there were no women among the immigrants, most of them young men.

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