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18 migrants found dead, 9 reportedly missing

By The Associated Press

This article was published December 15, 2012 at 11:02 a.m.

Coast guard officials say they have found the bodies of 18 people who were trying to cross illegally into Greece when their boat capsized early Friday.

A 20-year-old man found alive Friday told authorities there were 28 people on the crowded boat, including its Turkish owner, when it capsized off the northeastern island of Lesvos, near the Turkish coast. The man, who has been hospitalized, is the sole survivor found so far.

A coast guard spokesman said the migrants were “of Asian origin” without specifying further.

Coast guard vessels have been scouring the nearly calm seas east of Lesvos.

Tens of thousands of undocumented migrants cross into Greece each year, most through land and sea coming from Turkey.

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