Turkey ‘rescues 130 migrants pushed back from Greece’

Turkey 'rescues 130 migrants pushed back from Greece'
Turkey 'rescues 130 migrants pushed back from Greece'. Credit: Nejdet Duzen/Shutterstock.com.

TURKEY claims to have rescued 130 migrants after they were “pushed back from Greece”.

The Turkish Coast Guard has reported that the rescue operation happened off the Aegean province of İzmir when units identified that the migrants “tried to cross illegally” to the Greek islands, before being “pushed into Turkish territorial waters”.

Some 130 migrants who were stranded off İzmir’s Çeşme, Dikili, and Menderes districts were taken to the shore and sent to the Provincial Directorate of Migration Management, reports Hurriyet Daily News.

Turkey’s Ombudsman Institution says that Greece has pushed back almost 42,000 asylum seekers between 2020 and May 31, 2022.

“Some 98 percent of the pushbacks involved torture and ill-treatment, and 88 percent of the 8,000 asylum seekers who came to the Greek border were beaten up,” the report claimed.

The report continues to say that 53 irregular migrants in 2021 and 33 others in 2022 lost their lives, either drowned or frozen to death, apparently due to pushbacks.

Turkey is a key transit point for asylum seekers, particularly those fleeing war and persecution, who want to cross into Europe to start a new life.

The country hosts more than five million refugees and is taking security measures within and on borders to prevent an influx of migrants.

The Directorate General of Migration Management reports that between January and September 15, more than 200,000 irregular migrants have been caught in Turkey, with the number of irregular immigrants deported from the country in 2022 soaring to nearly 100,000.