Man drowns after trying to board departing ferry in Piraeus port, Greece

ATHENS (Reuters) – A 36-year-old man who tried to board a passenger ship sailing from Greece’s port of Piraeus on Tuesday drowned after being pushed off the ship’s stern ramp by crew members, the country’s shipping minister said on Wednesday .

The incident shocked the country. Video footage released on social media showed crew members arguing with the man on the stern ramp as the ferry left Piraeus for the island of Crete.

Shipping Minister Miltiadis Varvitsiotis said Wednesday the man who bought a ticket boarded the ship before disembarking for unknown reasons and then tried to board again. He was pushed back by crew members and also fell into the sea. The ship drove away.

“I feel shock and horror at what happened,” Varvitsiotis told Parapolitika radio. “The images are revealing and shocking. I also feel great sadness at the loss of the 36-year-old man.”

Varvitsiotis said on social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, that “there is no doubt that the crime was murder”. He added that four people have been arrested over the incident, which is being investigated by prosecutors.

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In two separate statements on Wednesday, ship owner Attica Group said its management was “shocked by the tragic incident” and was cooperating with authorities to help solve the case.

“The scenes we all saw last night are unimaginable and not in line with the group’s values,” it said, adding that the group is also internally investigating why “clear, defined procedures adopted by the crews of all our ships.” must be strictly followed”, were not followed.”

(Reporting by Renee Maltezou and Angeliki Koutantou; Editing by Alexandra Hudson)

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