Children among victims of latest refugee boat sinking
Ten children were among at least 24 people who died when a boat carrying refugees and migrants sank off the Greek island of Samos late on Wednesday night, the Greek coastguard said on Thursday.
Around 10 people were rescued by the Greek coastguard as well as by vessels from Frontex, the European border agency.
Earlier on Wednesday, rescuers discovered the bodies of seven people, two of them children, who had died when their boat sank off the coast of Kos.
The fresh sinkings come less than a week after 45 people were drowned when two separate boats ran into trouble on the way from Turkey to Greece.
Turkey is the main departure point for people attempting the dangerous journey, often in overcrowded boats to Greece.
So far in 2016, an average of roughly 1,500 people a day have arrived on the Greek islands, some of which are as little as four kilometres from Turkey across the choppy Aegean Sea.
More than 200 people have died attempting the crossing this year.
Doctors Without Borders, which assists people on stricken boats off the Greek coast, on Thursday called for European governments to open up safe routes for people to travel to the 28-member union.
However, with European governments struggling to deal effectively with over a million people who entered the union to claim asylum last year, politicians are focusing their efforts on boosting capacities to support migrants in Turkey and stem the flow of people leaving for Europe.
EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini pledged this week that a promised 3 billion euros ($3.3bn) in aid would be delivered to Turkey imminently, despite objections from Italy, which has demanded to know exactly how the money will be spent.