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Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 September 2018

Child dies as migrant boat sinks off Greece

A search was under way to locate more migrants who may have been on the small inflatable boat, which had left from Turkey and sank off the Greek island of Kastelorizo

A Greek coastguard speedboat secures the area next to a boat with tourists before the start of a Greek-Italian Intergovernmental Conference in the island of Corfu, Ionian Sea, on September 14, 2017. Petros Giannakouris / The Associated Press.
A Greek coastguard speedboat secures the area next to a boat with tourists before the start of a Greek-Italian Intergovernmental Conference in the island of Corfu, Ionian Sea, on September 14, 2017. Petros Giannakouris / The Associated Press.

A nine-year-old girl died on Thursday and 25 other people were rescued after a boat carrying migrants capsized off the coast of Greece, the Greek coastguard said.

A search was under way to locate more migrants who may have been on the small inflatable boat, which had left from Turkey and sank off the Greek island of Kastelorizo in the southeastern Aegean Sea.

The girl was pulled from the sea by a patrol boat of the EU's border force agency Frontex but died in hospital in Kastelorizo, the coastguard.

Twenty of the 25 people rescued were picked up on the rocky coast of the island, which they had managed to swim to.

No details were released on the nationalities of those on board.

In 2015, around a million people undertook risky sea journeys to cross the Mediterranean to Europe, mostly to Greece from Turkey over the Aegean Sea.

Thousands died in the perilous crossing. Responding to international pressure, Turkey tightened its sea borders and cracked down on migrant smuggling rings as part of a 2016 deal with the EU.

The numbers of migrants crossing the Aegean has since dwindled.

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