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Syrian refugee trying to cross border killed by Greek police

Ahmed Abu Emad, from Aleppo, was shot in the throat by Greek police and died of his injury

March 2, 2020 at 11:47 am

A Syrian refugee was killed earlier today by Greek border police following Turkey’s policy change which opened its border crossings to Europe. It is the first reported death of a refugee in this latest phase of the crisis.

Ahmed Abu Emad, from Aleppo, was shot in the throat by Greek police and died of his injury. He was one of the hundreds of thousands of refugees trying to cross the border with the hope of starting a new life in Europe. His body has been sent back to Turkey.

Greece has blocked nearly 10,000 migrants trying to enter from Turkey over the past 24 hours, a government source said on Sunday.

Last week, the Turkish authorities announced that they would no longer block the flow of migrants who want to reach Europe. The decision was made after 34 Turkish soldiers were killed by Bashar Al-Assad regime forces in Idlib in north-west Syria. The Turkish soldiers were deployed in order to protect local civilians under the 2018 Astana deal with Russia under which acts of aggression are prohibited in the supposed de-escalation zone.

Speaking today in Ankara, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan insisted that his country has to open the border with Europe as it is overburdened by the refugee influx from Idlib. Turkey is already host to more than 3.7 million Syrian refugees. “Europe will have to take its share of the migrant burden,” Erdogan told journalists.

On Friday, the UN urged the international community to step up support for Turkey in managing and hosting Syrian refugees, of which Turkey hosts more than any other country in the world.

Read: UN urges more support for Turkey on Syrian refugees