Turkish Coast Guard rescues 70 asylum seekers
Asylum seekers rescued off coast of Aegean Sea
IZMIR / BALIKESIR, Turkey
The Turkish Coast Guard rescued a total of 70 asylum seekers off the coast of the Aegean Sea, security sources said on Wednesday.
In western Izmir province, some 32 asylum seekers, whose boat was pushed back by the Greek Coast Guard into Turkish waters, were rescued by Turkish Coast Guard teams, a security source said on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.
The teams launched a rescue mission after receiving calls for help from the rubber boat off the Dikili coast.
The asylum seekers were transferred to the provincial immigration authority.
Some 38 more asylum seekers were rescued and taken ashore off the Ayvalik coast of northwestern Balikesir province.
Intending to reach the Greek island of Lesbos, the asylum seekers were stranded at sea when the engine of their rubber boat malfunctioned.
Turkish Coast Guard teams were sent to rescue the asylum seekers.
* Writing by Dilan Pamuk in Ankara