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Greece: 90 Migrants Rescued From Stranded Sailboat As Number Of Arrivals Rises

Greek officials have blamed the increase in arrivals largely on ongoing and expanding conflicts in Africa -– adding pressure on the main smuggling routes to Europe -– and also on a burgeoning black market industry in Turkey that produces low-quality inflatable boats.

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Greek authorities say 90 migrants have been rescued from a stranded sailboat near the Aegean Sea island of Amorgos, amid an increase in arrivals in recent weeks.

The migrants, rescued late Thursday, were taken to the eastern island of Leros and detained for identification and processing after patrol boats and three civilian vessels were involved in the rescue, the coast guard said Friday.

Greek officials have blamed the increase in arrivals largely on ongoing and expanding conflicts in Africa -– adding pressure on the main smuggling routes to Europe -– and also on a burgeoning black market industry in Turkey that produces low-quality inflatable boats.

The government says it has not changed its policy of intercepting boats at sea, a practice that human rights groups say includes illegal summary deportations also known as pushbacks. 

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