Cyprus rescues 101 Syrian migrants off coast

Cyprus rescues 101 Syrian migrants off coast
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Migrants take food and water from the Cyprus' Civil Defense after Cyprus' marine police boat as they're brought to a harbor after being rescued from their own vessel off the Mediterranean island nation's southeastern coast, of Protaras, Cyprus, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020. Police said there were 103 migrants, including minors aboard their vessel. (AP)
Cyprus rescues 101 Syrian migrants off coast
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Migrants aboard a Cyprus marine police patrol boat as they're brought to a harbor after being rescued from their own vessel off the Mediterranean island nation's southeastern coast, of Protaras, Cyprus, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020. Police said there were 103 migrants, including minors aboard their vessel. (AP)
Cyprus rescues 101 Syrian migrants off coast
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Migrants aboard a Cyprus marine police boat as they're brought to harbour after being rescued from their own vessel off the Mediterranean island nation's southeastern coast, at Protaras, Cyprus, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020. Police said there were 103 migrants, including minors aboard the vessel. (AP)
Cyprus rescues 101 Syrian migrants off coast
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A migrant mother holds her baby aboard a bus after being rescued from a vessel off the Mediterranean island nation's southeastern coast, in Protaras, Cyprus, Tuesday, Jan. 14, 2020. Police said there were 103 migrants, including minors aboard the vessel. (AP)
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Updated 14 January 2020

Cyprus rescues 101 Syrian migrants off coast

Cyprus rescues 101 Syrian migrants off coast
  • The migrants were brought to shore on an inflatable
  • The migrants — 88 men, six women and seven children — were being processed before transfer to Nicosia

NICOSIA: Cyprus police said they rescued 101 Syrian migrants sighted on a boat off the Mediterranean island’s southeast coast on Tuesday.
A patrol vessel located the 33-meter (100-foot) boat 18 nautical miles off the resort town of Protaras.
The migrants were brought to shore on an inflatable and their damaged boat anchored near a fishing harbor.
The migrants had said they set off from Mersin in Turkey, an eastern Mediterranean route often used by people smugglers.
The migrants — 88 men, six women and seven children — were being processed before transfer to a reception center outside the capital Nicosia.
Nicosia has warned Brussels it has come under pressure from increased migration flows, ranking it top in first-time asylum seekers in proportion to its population.
Cyprus is the first European Union member to permanently host the European Asylum Support Office to help cope with the spike in arrivals.
But the small EU member, located 100 miles (160 kilometers) from Syria, has not seen the same massive inflow of migrants as Turkey and Greece.
Syrian nationals accounted for 33 percent of first-time asylum seekers in Cyprus in the second quarter of 2019, EU figures show.
According to available government data, the number of arrivals and applicants for asylum from January to June last year almost reached 7,000.