1-2 vessels in distress, 1 group attacked at sea, rescued by Turkey

02.08.2015 / 09:48 / Aegean Sea

Watch The Med Alarm Phone Investigations - 1st of August 2015

Case name: 2015_08_01-AEG30
Situation: 1-2 vessels in distress, 1 group attacked by unidentified actors, rescued by Turkey
Status of WTM Investigations: Concluded (but investigation on attack ongoing)
Place of Incidents: Aegean Sea, Greece

Summary of the Cases: On Saturday the 1st of August 2015, the Alarm Phone was contacted by someone on Facebook who alerted us to a post by a person whose family was on a vessel in distress between Turkey and Greece. The post included a screen shot with the location of the vessel and GPS coordinates. Later on we learned that they had been rescued by the Turkish coastguard and returned to Turkey.

On the same day we were contacted by Nawal Soufi’s activist collective who alerted us to a vessel in distress and passed on GPS coordinates. Since the GPS coordinates were nearly identical with the ones from the first case, it may be that, in fact, they belonged to the same group of travellers. We learned that they had an encounter at sea with an unidentified vessel, whose crew removed their petrol. As they were in Turkish waters, we contacted MRCC Ankara who confirmed that they would be searching for the vessel. Hours later we received the confirmation from the travellers that they had been saved by the Turkish coastguard and were now in Izmir.
Last update: 10:11 Aug 04, 2015
Credibility: UP DOWN 0
Layers »
  • Border police patrols
    While the exact location of patrols is of course constantly changing, this line indicates the approximate boundary routinely patrolled by border guards’ naval assets. In the open sea, it usually correspond to the outer extent of the contiguous zone, the area in which “State may exercise the control necessary to prevent infringement of its customs, fiscal, immigration or sanitary laws” (UNCLOS, art. 33). Data source: interviews with border police officials.
  • Coastal radars
    Approximate radar beam range covered by coastal radars operating in the frame of national marine traffic monitoring systems. The actual beam depends from several different parameters (including the type of object to be detected). Data source: Finmeccanica.
  • Exclusive Economic Zone
    Maritime area beyond and adjacent to the territorial sea in which the coastal state exercises sovereign rights for the purposes of exploring and exploiting, conserving and managing the natural resources, whether living or non-living, the seabed and its subsoil and the superjacent waters. Its breadth is 200 nautical miles from the straight baselines from which the territorial sea is measured (UNCLOS, Arts. 55, 56 and 57). Data source: Juan Luis Suárez de Vivero, Atlas of the European Seas and Oceans
  • Frontex operations
    Frontex has, in the past few years, carried out several sea operations at the maritime borders of the EU. The blue shapes indicate the approximate extend of these operations. Data source: Migreurop Altas.
  • Mobile phone coverage
    Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) network coverage. Data source: Collins Mobile Coverage.
  • Oil and gas platforms
    Oil and gas platforms in the Mediterranean. Data source:
  • Search and Rescue Zone
    An area of defined dimensions within which a given state is has the responsibility to co-ordinate Search and Rescue operations, i.e. the search for, and provision of aid to, persons, ships or other craft which are, or are feared to be, in distress or imminent danger. Data source: IMO availability of search and rescue (SAR) services - SAR.8/Circ.3, 17 June 2011.
  • Territorial Waters
    A belt of sea (usually extending up to 12 nautical miles) upon which the sovereignty of a coastal State extends (UNCLOS, Art. 2). Data source: Juan Luis Suárez de Vivero, Atlas of the European Seas and Oceans