Since the beginning of 2022, Turkey has deported at least 19,000 illegal immigrants, an official said.
According to the Istanbul Governorship, identity checks and address-based inspections to find people in the city illegally continue uninterruptedly, especially in squares, parks, beaches, and public transportation routes.
"Since January 2022, action has been taken against 94,708 illegal immigrants in Istanbul, and 19,032 people have been deported from our city," said the governorship.
"66,524 processed illegal immigrants were transferred to repatriation centers in other provinces to be deported. Our fight against illegal immigration continues decisively and effectively."
Ankara has recently stepped up its efforts to fight illegal migration as the domestic debate on migration has intensified.
Turkey has been a key transit point for irregular migrants who want to cross into Europe to start new lives, especially those fleeing war and persecution in their countries.
It already hosts 4 million refugees, more than any other country in the world, and is taking new security measures on its borders to prevent a fresh influx of migrants humanely.
Some circles in Turkey have been fueling anti-refugee sentiment recently as news of a new Afghan migrant wave gathered steam, making the issue of migration once again fair game for political discussions. The main opposition, the Republican People’s Party (CHP) Chairperson Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, has pledged frequently to send Syrian migrants and refugees in Turkey back to their war-torn homes within two years if he assumes office.