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Greece finds no more survivors after sinking of migrant boat, 100 are still feared missing

KALAMATA, GREECE(AP) – Rescue workers transferred the bodies of dead migrants to refrigerated trucks as a major search continued yesterday for possible survivors of a sea disaster in southern Greece. Hundreds of people are still feared missing.

At least 78 bodies have been recovered after a fishing boat crammed with migrants seeking to make it from Libya to Italy capsized and sank a day earlier in deep waters off the Greek coast.

Rescuers saved 104 passengers – including Egyptians, Syrians, Pakistanis, Afghans and Palestinians, mostly men and including eight minors – but authorities fear that hundreds of others may have been trapped below deck. If confirmed, that would make the tragedy one of the worst ever recorded in the central Mediterranean.

Authorities revised the confirmed death toll from 79 following an overnight count of the bodies.

“The survivors are in a very difficult situation. Right now they are in shock,” head of a United Nations Refugee Agency delegation Erasmia Roumana told The Associated Press after meeting the rescued migrants in a storage hangar in the southern port of Kalamata.

“They want to get in touch with their families to tell them they are okay, and they keep asking about the missing. Many have friends and relatives unaccounted for.”

Greece declared three days of mourning and politicians suspended campaigning for a general election on June 25. A Supreme Court prosecutor ordered an investigation into the circumstances of the deaths.

Survivors of a shipwreck rest at a warehouse at the port in Kalamata town, Greece. PHOTO: AP