Left to die by Greek coastguards, Pak survivors say boat was deliberately sunk


Islamabad, June 19 (IANS) Pakistani survivors on the ill-fated boat that capsised off the Greece coast have blamed Greek coastguards for the incident, saying the ship – carrying hundreds of people – was deliberately sunk and no rescue was provided, media reports said.

The video account of the victims exposed the inhuman attitude of Greece authorities in the last hours leading to the tragedy, Geo News reported.

Authorities in Europe still have no clear idea as to how many people were aboard the boat when it sank – estimates range from 400 to over 700 – but likely hundreds came from Pakistan.

The accounts of two Pakistani survivors emerged days after the tragic incident.

“They have done this [on purpose]. They have sunk it themselves,” one of the survivors said, while the other added that they had been still for five days and six nights before the ship sunk “in a minute”.

“We did not sink for five days […] so why would we sink now?”

They recounted that the ship’s engine had broken down, leaving them still for almost a week, Geo News reported.

“We did not drown even though our engine had [completely] shut down. On the sixth night, around 2:30 a.m., I checked the time; it was 2:15 a.m. Around 10 minutes later, this incident occurred,” one of them said, adding, “It [the boat] sunk because of the one-maund-rope they threw into the boat.”

They further alleged that the coastguards did not help despite the presence of two-speed boats, one cargo boat and one receiving ship at the location, Geo News reported.

This statement endorsed an independent investigation reported by the BBC that poked holes in the Greece authorities’ account of the incident.

An analysis of the movement of other ships in the area suggests that the boat remained stationary for at least seven hours before drowning.



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