Dangerous winds drive further fears for refugees

Dangerous winds drive further fears for refugees
As weather worsens on the Turkish coastline, warnings are issued to refugees who are attempting the journey by boat to Greece.
2 min read
02 October, 2015
Thousands of refugees have died this year attempting to reach the shores of Europe [AFP]
The coastguard on Bodram in Turkey has warned that the dangerous "Miltemi" winds have arrived, fuelling further fears for refugees travelling by dinghies from Turkey to Greece.

The winds, which are an annual feature of the end of summer, cause waves to reach at least three metres. It is expected to last another week.

Activists have been sharing the announcement in multiple languages, warning refugees that they should refrain from travelling after 2pm until the winds subside around October 7.

There have also been reports that extremely cheap "life-jackets" on sale in the Turkish coastal town are not bona fide, and do not offer protection.

The season has seen huge numbers of refugees, mostly from Syria, travelling from Turkey due to the calmer weather in the summer.

However, thousands have died on the route, due to inadequate boats, life jackets and bad weather.

The popular facebook group "Humans of New York" travelled to Greece this week to record the stories of refugees who embarked on the journey. One woman told of losing her husband in a shipwreck.

"Once we saw the boat, many of us wanted to go back, but he [the smuggler] told us that anyone who turned back would not get a refund. We had no choice," she told the group.

"The waves were high. I could hear him calling me but he got further and further away. Eventually a boat found me. They never found my husband."

A decrease in the flow of refugees is expected as winter sets in and the sea crossing from Turkey to Greece becomes more dangerous.

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