More than 90 undocumented migrants held across Turkey

Syrians, Afghans and Iraqis among those held in Aydin, Canakkale and Van provinces

More than 90 undocumented migrants held across Turkey FILE PHOTO


By Ferdi Uzun

AYDIN, Turkey

At least 92 undocumented migrants have been held across Turkey, according to a security source on Monday. 

Out of the total, 41 Syrians, including 19 children were rounded up in Soke district of southwestern Aydin province, the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to the media, said. 

They were held after a minibus carrying the migrants along with three suspects, who were allegedly organizing the illegal movement was stopped on Soke-Kusadası highway near Soke district.

The undocumented migrants were sent to Aydin Provincial Directorate of Migration Management while the three suspects were arrested on charges of human trafficking. 

Separately, 34 people, said to be Afghan nationals, were stopped off Ayvacik district of northwestern Canakkale province when they made a bid to board a boat to take them towards Greece’s Lesbos Island, the source said. 

Also, gendarmes held 17 Iraqis, including 10 children from a minibus in Baskale district of eastern Van province after they crossed into Turkey illegally, the source said. 

The driver of the minibus was arrested while the undocumented migrants were sent to the Foreigners Branch of the Van Police Department for deportation. 

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

Among the migrants held in 2017 in Turkey, the majority came from Pakistan -- around 15,000 -- followed by Afghans at around 12,000. Syrians totaled about 10,000.

*Hanife Erdinc from Canakkale and Zafer Tayfur from Van province contributed to this story. 

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