One dead off Cyprus as more than 40 Syrian migrants arrive
Cypriot police said the body of a man was retrieved off the Mediterranean island’s western coast Thursday after newly arrived migrants said one among them had fallen overboard.
Police said a group of 44 Syrians — including two women and four children — were found wandering in the Peyia area north of Paphos.
The migrants told police that a man on the boat they were traveling in had gone missing before they reached the shore.
Authorities launched a rescue operation, and the body of a man was discovered in the waters.
A police official said the body was found after an extensive search using a helicopter, but it had yet to be formally identified.
The missing migrant was reported to be a 24-year-old Syrian.
Police believe the Syrians were smuggled from Turkey and dropped off pre-dawn before the boat departed.
Cyprus has complained that people smugglers have driven a huge rise in asylum seekers landing on its shores from Turkey in recent years.
The small EU state has lobbied Brussels to take action over the “disproportionate” numbers of asylum seekers it receives.
After being processed, the migrants who arrived on Thursday morning will be transferred to a reception center outside the capital Nicosia.
Source: Arab News
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