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Greece rescues migrants stranded at sea

Scores rescued after their boat broke down in the Aegean Sea as they attempted to enter the country illegally.

Last updated: 01 Jul 2014 21:38
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Greece is a major entry point for illegal migrants seeking a better life in Europe [AP]

Authorities in Greece say they have rescued 140 people whose boat broke down in the Aegean Sea as they were trying to enter the country illegally.

A coast guard statement said the immigrants were picked up on Tuesday in international waters between the Greek islands of Rhodes and Karpathos. The operation involved nine cargo ships and ferries in the area, a navy frigate and a rescue helicopter.

The immigrants' nationalities have not been made public. They were safely taken to Rhodes.

Greece is a major entry point for people - mostly from war-torn countries in the Middle East and Africa -seeking a better life in the European Union.

Migrants typically pay smuggling gangs to clandestinely ferry them from Turkey to the Greek islands, frequently risking their lives in unseaworthy craft.

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