White people did it.
I knew it.
Survivors of a boat disaster that likely killed hundreds of migrants near Greece have given accounts of traffickers in North Africa cramming them into a clapped-out fishing trawler. They recounted hellish conditions above and below deck, with no food or water.
Some also said the tragic end, when it came, was precipitated by the actions of the Greek coastguard. They have told judicial authorities of a doomed attempt to tow the overloaded trawler that caused the vessel to capsize in the early hours of June 14.
A disastrous coastguard towing attempt was recounted in six of the nine statements from survivors submitted to Greek judicial officials investigating the causes of the tragedy, according to evidence seen by Reuters.
One Syrian survivor said he and other migrants on board the Adriana, which had broken down en route to Italy, screamed “Stop!” after a Greek coastguard vessel attached a rope to the bow of the trawler and began to pull it while picking up speed.
The migrant boat tilted left and right and then it turned upside down, he added.
The towing episode was also recounted by two other survivors who were separately interviewed by Reuters and asked not to be identified for fear of reprisals from Greek authorities. One of them, who gave his name only as Mohamed, described the terrifying moments when the Adriana overturned, which he said came when the coastguard started tugging the boat.
“They quickly pulled us and the boat capsized. It moved to the right, to the left, to the right and it capsized. People started to fall on each other,” he said. “People were on top of each other, people were screaming, people were drowning each other. It was night time and there were waves. It was scary.”
On June 15 a coastguard spokesperson, responding to local media reports that cited some survivors who said the trawler was towed, publicly denied that a coastguard vessel had attached a rope to the Adriana at any time.
A day later, the coastguard amended its account: it said its vessel had attached a rope to the Adriana to help it draw nearer to communicate. The coastguard denied it had subsequently tried to tow the trawler, saying it had kept its distance.
Nikos Spanos, a retired admiral in the Greek coastguard, told Reuters it was unlikely that a coastguard vessel would have attempted such a dangerous manoeuvre as towing the stricken trawler.
“Its (the coastguard’s) aim was to establish a better contact to help the vessel and assess the situation. This is my understanding. Because if they had tried to tow it or anything else, it would have been too risky and this wouldn’t have been the right way to do it.”
I hope they did it on purpose.
I’m so sick of these people.
“It is very, very unfair to point the finger at the Greek Coast Guard. (It) has saved tens of thousands of people in risk of dying at sea. They are doing an incredibly difficult job.”
Greece’s PM Mitsotakis at European Parliament pic.twitter.com/SLmhUVPLVs
— e-Αmyna (@e_amyna) June 29, 2023
After the thing in France, Greeks will be doing it on purpose, if they’re not already.
These people are the enemy.