3,467 illegal migrants intercepted over past week in Turkey

ANADOLU AGENCY
ANKARA
Published 02.12.2019 13:49
Updated 02.12.2019 13:50
The Turkish Coast Guard intercepts 34 illegal migrants aboard a boat at the mouth of the Menderes River in western Turkey, Oct. 10, 2019. (IHA Photo)
The Turkish Coast Guard intercepts 34 illegal migrants aboard a boat at the mouth of the Menderes River in western Turkey, Oct. 10, 2019. (IHA Photo)

Over the past week, at least 3,467 illegal migrants have been detained across Turkey, a key point for migrants aiming to cross into Europe, according to data gathered from security services by Anadolu Agency.

Turkish gendarmerie forces intercepted 1,269 of the migrants in the northwestern province of Edirne, which borders Greece and Bulgaria.

According to local sources in Edirne, Greece has stepped up efforts to send illegal migrants to Turkey in violation of the Geneva Conventions, the European Convention on Human Rights and the U.N. Convention against Torture.

In Turkey's coastal cities of Muğla, Çanakkale, İzmir, Balıkesir and Aydın, the Turkish Coast Guard and gendarmerie forces have rounded up over 1,926 migrants.

Meanwhile, among the 143 migrants sailing from Ayvalık district of Balıkesir province, 50 were Afghani children, the coast guard stated.

In the northwestern provinces of Kırklareli and Tekirdağ, a total of 61 migrants were held by gendarmerie forces while 37 others were held in the capital Ankara and 174 were intercepted in southern Adana, Hatay and Kahramanmaraş, western Manisa and southeastern Gaziantep provinces.

The migrants included Pakistani, Congolese, Syrian, Iraqi, Iranian, Afghan, Moroccan, Egyptian, Bangladeshi, Somali, Yemeni, Palestinian, Malian, Gabonese, Senegalese, Burundian, Cameroonian, Angolan, Libyan, Lebanese and South African nationals.

All the migrants were either taken to hospitals for medical treatment or transferred to provincial migration offices.

In 2018, 268,000 illegal migrants, fleeing war or persecution were held in Turkey, according to the Interior Ministry while some 336,707 others have been held in 2019 so far.

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