All eight crew members of a Syrian cargo ship were rescued in the southeastern Aegean on Monday after being forced to abandon ship as it sank in high winds, a Greek Merchant Marine Ministry spokesman said.
The Syrian-registered Wael 2 began listing and taking on water late on Sunday, some 53 miles (85 km) off the southeastern coast of Crete, and issued a distress call.
The all-Syrian crew was safely picked up by the Greek-registered ship West Med, the spokesman said.
"They (the crew) jumped into the sea wearing lifejackets," Emmanouel Filtikakis said. He said rescue helicopters and coastguard vessels had also arrived in the area.
The ship had left Cyprus and was en route to Libya carrying cement -- ATHENS (Reuters)