Three dead after refugee boat capsizes near Turkey-Greece border

A boat that carried refugees lies semi-submerged off Samos Island, Greece. Three refugees died when a boat capsized on the Maritsa River, which flows between Turkey and Greece. (AP)
Updated 13 February 2018
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Three dead after refugee boat capsizes near Turkey-Greece border

ISTANBUL: Three people died and four were missing on Tuesday after a refugee boat carrying eight people capsized in a river that flows between Turkey and Greece, a spokeswoman for Turkey’s Disaster and Emergency Organization (AFAD) said.
The eighth refugee had made it into Greece, it said.
The boat was traveling along the Maritsa River, in Turkey’s northwestern province of Edirne, when it capsized early on Tuesday, the first aid organization said. Nearby residents heard yells and informed the local gendarmarie forces.
Searchers recovered three bodies, it said, adding that two of them were children — one around 12 years old and the other around four. The causes of death were not yet determined.
AFAD was still looking for the four others on the boat but said the cold temperatures and the strong currents in the water was impeding operations.
A 2016 deal between Turkey and the European Union sharply reduced the flow of refugees into the bloc, many of whom had made the short but dangerous sea crossing from Turkey to Greek islands a few miles offshore.
Overall Mediterranean arrivals to the European Union, including refugees making the longer and more perilous crossing from north Africa to Italy, stood at 172,301 in 2017, down from 362,753 in 2016 and 1,015,078 in 2015, according to UN data.


Taliban say no peace with ‘occupation,’ want US talks

Updated 17 min 11 sec ago
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Taliban say no peace with ‘occupation,’ want US talks

  • The Taliban have always said the war can only end through direct talks with the US
  • Thousands of people - military and civilian - have been killed since the war began

KABUL, Afghanistan: The leader of the Taliban says there will be no peace in Afghanistan as long as the foreign “occupation” continues, reiterating the group’s position that the 17-year war can only be brought to an end through direct talks with the United States.
In a message released Saturday in honor of the Eid Al-Adha holiday, Maulvi Haibatullah Akhunzadah says the group remains committed to “Islamic goals,” the sovereignty of Afghanistan and ending the war.
The Taliban have had a major resurgence in recent years, seizing districts across the country and regularly carrying out large-scale attacks.
From 1996 until 2001, the Taliban ruled in accordance with a harsh interpretation of Islamic law. Women were barred from education and largely confined to their homes, and the country hosted Osama bin Laden and Al-Qaeda.