Hellenic Coast Guard rescues 36 illegal immigrants 1
Photo credit: Stratis Balaskas

Thirty-six illegal immigrants were rescued in the early hours of the morning by the Hellenic Coast Guard, in the sea area between the Turkish coast and the northwestern coast of Lesvos.

The 16 men, 10 women and 10 children were from Afghanistan and Iran.

They were transported to the port of Petra, where they will remain until they are medically checked and then they will be taken to Megala Therma for quarantine.

Three passengers, including two pregnant women, were transported by ambulance to the hospital, where they were found to be in very good health, at which point they returned to the port of Petra.

This was the third boat of illegal immigrants arriving in Lesvos for this month so far. A total of 108 refugees and migrants passed through Lesvos in June. On the other islands of the northern Aegean, zero illegal immigrants have arrived since March.

The United Nations Refugee Agency said that between June 1- 7, 72 illegal immigrants arrived on the Aegean islands, an increase from the previous week’s 55 arrivals but a decrease from last year’s 766 arrivals during the same period, as reported by Greek City Times.

Currently, according to the agency, there are 36,900 illegal immigrants on the Aegean islands, with nearly half from Afghanistan. The majority of the population on the Aegean islands are from Afghanistan (49%), Syria (19%) and Somalia (6%).

Of the 36,900 illegal immigrants on the islands, 22% were women and 33% were children, in which 6 out of 10 are younger than 12 years old. Of those children, around 13% were unaccompanied or separated from their parents and were mostly from Afghanistan.

However, 45% of the illegal immigrants were men, more than double the number of women.

Last week, 421 illegal immigrants departed from the Aegean islands to the mainland when they received permission from authorities. Of those, 70 were transferred by the Government with the support of UNHCR to apartments currently managed by the agency.