25/11: Alarm Phone alerted to missed person on Turkish-Greek border, saved

26.11.2016 / 22:49 / Evros river, Turkish-Greek border

Watch The Med Alarm Phone Investigations – 25th of November 2016

Case name: 2016_11_25-AEG274
Situation: Alarm Phone alerted to missed person on Turkish-Greek border; saved
Status of WTM Investigation: Concluded
Place of Incident: Aegean Sea

Summary of the Cases: On Friday the 25th of November 2016 at 10pm, the Alarm Phone was called by a woman who informed us about a friend of her, who was stuck in a forest close to the river Evros at the Turkish-Greek border for two days. She had lost contact to him 8 hours ago and was afraid that he was injured or had lost consciousness. She forwarded a phone number and his last known GPS position to us, which was on the Greek side of the border, close to the village of Souflion. We asked her to call the international emergency number 112 and agreed to call the Greek police and other organizations in this area ourselves. In the following hours we tried to reach various numbers, including the police and the health centre of Soufli, the police departments in Alexandropolis and in Orestiada, the Hellenic police headquarter, the coastguard in Piraeus and the customs and border police stations in Kipoi and Feres – all without success. Either no one picked up or the people we reached did not feel responsible to react. Yet finally, at 1.15am, we reached the Hellenic Rescue Team and convinced them to call the local emergency number 112 and to forward the GPS position of the man. At 1.40am, we informed the contact woman on what we had done so far and promised to further work on this case on the next day. At 6.30am of the next day, we again called all the numbers mentioned above, but without success. However, the Hellenic Rescue Team confirmed to us that they had called 112 and were forwarded to a Frontex officer, who promised to search for the man and to take care of him. In another call to the Greek border police at 7am, we were referred to a number in Alexandropolis. Yet, nobody spoke English there. Thus we asked a Greek friend to call this number, who finally got some information at about 7.40am: the police had searched at the given position and in the surrounding, but did not find anybody. At 8am, we informed the initial contact woman about the current situation. We also forwarded the phone number of the border police station in Alexandropolis to her and she thanked us for our efforts. Eventually, in the evening of this day, we contacted her again and she confirmed to us that a friend of her had found the missing person. He was in need of a doctor but had survived and reached Greece.
Last update: 09:24 Jan 16, 2017
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

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