Security forces detain 21 irregular migrants and rescue 7 in Aegean Sea

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As security forces continue their efforts to tackle irregular migration and deter migrants from embarking on dangerous journeys and risking their lives, 21 migrants were detained in the southern province of Hatay on Sunday and seven were rescued in the Aegean Sea.

Provincial gendarmerie teams from the Antakya district in Hatay carried out an operation after receiving information about foreigners entering the country illegally. In this context, 21 migrants of Syrian origin were found and sent to the provincial migration directorate.

Turkey has been a key transit point for asylum seekers trying to enter Europe to start a new life, especially those fleeing war and persecution.

Turkey, which already hosts 4 million refugees, more than any other country in the world, is taking new security measures inside and on its borders to prevent a new influx of migrants.

Meanwhile, up to seven irregular migrants have been rescued in the Aegean Sea off western Turkey, while search and rescue operations continue for three more, the Guard Command reported on Saturday. coasts of the country.

The Coast Guard said in a statement that a helicopter, two boats and a team of divers were dispatched to the area on Friday evening after receiving reports that a boat was sinking off the coastal town of Bodrum in the province. by Muğla.

Seven irregular migrants were rescued from the sea and brought back to land in good health.

Turkey has repeatedly condemned Greece’s illegal practice of turning away asylum seekers, saying it violates humanitarian values ​​and international law by endangering the lives of vulnerable migrants, including women and children. children.

Turkey’s five Aegean provinces – Çanakkale, Balıkesir, Izmir, Muğla and Aydın – are prime locations for refugees leaving Turkey for the European Union, with Greek islands within sight of the Turkish coast.

Hundreds of people have died at sea as scores of boats carrying refugees sank or capsized. The Turkish Coast Guard command saved thousands more.

Turkey has accused Greece of large-scale refoulements, summary expulsions and denial of migrants access to asylum procedures, in violation of international law. Ankara also accuses the EU of turning a blind eye to this blatant human rights violation.

Refoulements are considered contrary to international refugee protection agreements, which stipulate that people must not be expelled or returned to a country where their life and safety could be in danger because of their race, religion, nationality or affiliation. to a social or political group.

More recently, a German weekly reported that Greece is adopting “brutality against asylum seekers” as a policy.

The EU has clear rules regarding the treatment of asylum seekers, giving them the right to seek asylum once they are in EU territory. But Greece is violating those rights, Der Spiegel noted last week.

He drew attention to a policy of violent brutality and systematic pushback by Greek authorities, including police, special forces and coastguard units, saying: “They contradict the values ​​that European politicians constantly evoke “.

Kyriakos Mitsotakis was once considered a liberal in his conservative New Democracy political party, he noted, adding that he “drastically tightened his country’s migration policies” once he took power.

Greek border guard units killed at least two migrants when they attempted to cross the Turkish-Greek border in February 2020 – an incident Mitsotakis evocatively referred to as an “invasion” – reiterated Der Spiegel.

Moreover, despite the denial of the Greek government insisting that it adhere to European and international law, Der Spiegel noted that he had evidence to refute the Greek counterclaims.

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