Greece: Man, child missing from migrant boat sinking

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In this photo provided on Wednesday, Aug. 26, 2020 by the Greek Coast Guard, a half-sunken yacht is photographed during a search and rescue operation by the Greek authorities west of the small island of Halki, near Rhodes, southeastern Greece. A total of 96 people were rescued from the sea as the migrants had been travelling in the yacht that was found partially sunk. (Greek Coast Guard via AP)

ATHENS, Greece (AP) — Greece’s coast guard said that a search and rescue operation was continuing Thursday, two days after the partial sinking of a yacht that had been carrying nearly 100 migrants in the eastern Aegean Sea, to locate a father and child reported missing.

A total of 96 people were rescued during the broad operation that took place mainly after dark Tuesday night, plucked from the sea by helicopters, patrol boats and nearby merchant ships after the yacht partially sank 21 nautical miles (31 kilometers, 24 miles) west of the small Greek island of Halki.

Of those rescued, 72 were transported to Rhodes, five to the island of Karpathos and 19 were picked up from a cargo ship by the Turkish coast guard.

The Greek coast guard said Thursday that a family member has reported the father and child weren’t among those rescued. No information was immediately available on their nationality or the child’s age.

The coast guard also said it had arrested a 41-year-old as a suspected migrant smuggler, bringing to four the number of people rescued from the wreck who have been arrested on suspicion of having been the smugglers transporting the migrants.

Thousands of people continue to make their way to the Greek islands from the nearby Turkish coast, paying smugglers to ferry them in often unseaworthy, overcrowded inflatable dinghies or other vessels.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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