Greek border guards have blocked more than 36,000 migrants from entering the EU illegally from Turkey through the border river Evros in the past 30 days. This was announced by the Greek Minister for Civil Protection Takis Theodorikakos on Tuesday. Since the beginning of the year, about 154,000 people have been prevented from coming from Turkey to Greece in this way. In addition, 852 suspected smugglers were arrested during this period.
Since 2019, Greece has rigorously prevented attempts by migrants to enter Turkey by land or sea. Humanitarian organizations criticize that people are illegally pushed back without being given the opportunity to apply for asylum.
Ankara would not prevent border crossings
The government in Athens holds the Turkish government accountable: Ankara does not prevent border crossings, as stipulated in the refugee pact with the EU, but encourages them and follows a kind of “push-forward” tactic.
The Greek government wants to close the border with Turkey in the northeast of the country almost completely due to the increased number of migrants. The existing 35 km border fence along the Evros River is currently being extended by 80 km.