07/08: 45 persons rescued to Rhodes

08.08.2017 / 14:55 / Rhodes, Aegean Sea

Watch The Med Alarm Phone Investigations – 7th of August 2017

Case name: 2017_08_07-AEG298
Situation: 45 persons rescued to Rhodes
Status of WTM Investigation: Concluded
Place of Incident: Aegean Sea

Summary of the Cases: On Monday, the 7th of August 2017, at 1:45am, we received a Whatsapp message from a contact person about travellers, mostly families with children, in distress in the Aegean Sea. The message said that the travellers were on an overcrowded boat and that they had been left alone by the smugglers. We immediately reached out to the travellers, but had difficulties to communicate with them. We nevertheless found out that they had departed from Turkey around 11pm local time. They asked us to inform the Coastguard and gave us more details about their condition: they were about 45 persons on board, 3 persons were severely injured. Unfortunately, they could not tell us where exactly they were located. We told them to call 112 and find a way to send us their GPS coordinates. After this first communication, we could not reach them again. At 2.28am, we eventually reached them again and they sent us a location on Google maps and a screenshot via Viber. They were near Rhodes Island, just in front of Afantou. We called the Greek Coastguard, who said that they were not too far from the boat and would look for them. We forwarded this information to the travellers. At 3.56am, the Greek Coastguard informed us that they had picked up the travellers and were on their way to Rhodes. We couldn't confirm this information with the travellers, as they we could not reach them any longer. We sent them a message with some information about the arrival in Europe. At 2.30pm, a search and rescue organisation from Rhodes confirmed via e-mail that all travellers had been rescued.
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