At least 15 migrants drown off Greek island

"She told us that there were at least 25 people on board", Dimitris Maggiras, a senior coastguard official, said.

Illustrative: Syrian refugees arrive on the shores of the Greek island of Lesbos after crossing the Aegean Sea from Turkey on a inflatable dinghy, September 11, 2015.

The six dead were one man, four women and a boy.

Greek authorities had received no distress call prior to finding the bodies, the coastguard spokeswoman says.

Greece's coast guard said the bodies of nine people - six women, two men and a child - had been recovered from Greek waters off the island of Lesbos, while Turkish authorities found the bodies of a further six men and a child in Turkish waters.

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In that year, Lesbos was the main gateway into the European Union for almost a million Syrians, Iraqis and Afghans.

The U.N. refugee agency, UNHCR, said one of the women was believed to be from Congo and the other from Cameroon.

The search for more survivors continued on Monday with vessels from the coast guard, navy, Frontex and an NGO craft scouring the area. But a European Union-Turkey deal reached a year ago - in which those arriving on Greek islands face deportation back to Turkey - has significantly reduced the number of people attempting to cross. It was unclear what type of vessel was used Monday. An average of 20 arrive on Greek islands each day.

According to the Greek Maritime Ministry, a boat carrying migrants and refugees left Turkey late on Sunday night but appeared to have sunk after entering Greek waters.

According to UNHCR, around 4,900 people have tried to make the crossing from Turkey to Greece since the beginning of this year, compared with 173,450 reported arrivals in 2016.


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