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Over 370 irregular migrants held across Turkey

April 22, 2019 at 7:29 pm

At least 372 irregular migrants were held across Turkey on Monday, according to security sources.

Some 261 irregular migrants who had entered Turkey illegally were held by gendarmerie forces in the eastern province of Van, a source said on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

In the northwestern province of Kirklareli, gendarmerie forces held 18 irregular migrants from Afghanistan.

Meanwhile, 53 migrants who were trying to cross to Greece were held by the Turkish Coast Guard off the Aegean coast of Canakkale.

In southern Hatay province, border forces held 40 Syrian migrants who had crossed illegally from neighbouring Syria.

In the past four days, security forces held 1,207 irregular migrants in northwestern Edirne province, bordering Greece and Bulgaria, security sources announced Monday.

READ: 139 irregular migrants held in Turkey’s Izmir province

At least six people were arrested for alleged human smuggling in the operations.

All migrants were later referred to provincial migration directorates.

Turkey has been the main route for refugees trying to cross to Europe, especially since the beginning of the civil war in Syria.

Some 268,000 irregular migrants were held in Turkey in 2018, according to the Interior Ministry.