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Trial below method in Greece over Pylos shipwreck that killed greater than 500 | Migration Information

Trial below method in Greece over Pylos shipwreck that killed greater than 500 | Migration Information


Rights teams argue the 9 Egyptian defendants’ proper to a good trial has been compromised by ‘incomplete’ proof.

9 Egyptian males have gone on trial in southern Greece accused of inflicting the Pylos shipwreck final 12 months that killed lots of of migrants and refugees.

Worldwide human rights teams argue that their proper to a good trial is being compromised as they face judgement earlier than an investigation is concluded into claims the Hellenic Coast Guard might have botched the rescue try.

On Tuesday, a small group of protesters clashed with riot police because the proceedings received below method at a court docket in Kalamata, southern Greece.

The defendants, most of whom are of their 20s, withstand life in jail if convicted on a number of prison expenses over the sinking of the Adriana fishing trawler on June 14, 2023.

As many as 750 individuals on board the trawler, which was travelling from Libya to Italy, and greater than 550 individuals are believed to have died, in keeping with rights teams and impartial investigators.

Following the sinking, 104 individuals have been rescued – principally from Syria, Pakistan and Egypt – and 82 our bodies have been recovered.

United Nations Secretary-Basic Antonio Guterres has described the shipwreck off the southern coast of Greece as “horrific”.

Police conflict with protesters exterior the court docket in Kalamata, Greece, on Could 21, 2024 [Thanassis Stavrakis/AP Photo]

Allegations towards Hellenic Coast Guard

Attorneys from Greek human rights teams signify the 9 Egyptians, who deny the smuggling expenses.

“There’s an actual threat that these 9 survivors could possibly be discovered ‘responsible’ based mostly on incomplete and questionable proof provided that the official investigation into the position of the coastguard has not but been accomplished,” mentioned Judith Sunderland, an affiliate director for Europe and Central Asia at Human Rights Watch (HRW).

Authorities say the defendants have been recognized by different survivors, and the indictments are based mostly on their testimonies.

Survivor testimonies supplied to Al Jazeera pin the blame on the Greek coastguard, which tried to tow the vessel, inflicting it to flip over, saying that it didn’t sufficiently act to save lots of the lives of these within the water.

The Hellenic Coast Guard has denied these allegations.

People walking down a boat
Paramedics of the Greek Nationwide Emergency Ambulance Service (EKAV) and members of the Greek Crimson Cross assist migrants upon arrival at Kalamata’s port [File: Bougiotis Evangelos/EPA-EFE]

Sunderland posted on X that “it’s actually necessary to do not forget that justice will solely be completed through a full and clear accounting of the obligations of the Greek authorities”.

A joint Amnesty Worldwide and Human Rights Watch report, based mostly on testimonies from representatives of the Hellenic Coast Guard, the Greek police, and nongovernmental organisations, additionally concluded that the coastguard didn’t correctly reply to misery calls.

An investigation in Greece’s naval court docket into the Hellenic Coast Guard’s position within the shipwreck has but to be concluded.

“The Pylos 9 defendants have been unjustly arrested and charged with smuggling offences based mostly on restricted and questionable proof,” Marion Bouchetel, a member of Authorized Centre Lesvos, which is defending the accused, advised Al Jazeera.

“Our argument, following the testimonies of the survivors, is that these 9 individuals are not chargeable for the sinking on the very least. The coastguard is chargeable for the sinking,” Stefanos Levidis, one of many lead researchers in an investigation into the shipwreck, advised Al Jazeera.

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Written by bourbiza mohamed

Bourbiza Mohamed is a freelance journalist and political science analyst holding a Master's degree in Political Science. Armed with a sharp pen and a discerning eye, Bourbiza Mohamed contributes to various renowned sites, delivering incisive insights on current political and social issues. His experience translates into thought-provoking articles that spur dialogue and reflection.

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