By Omer Ural and Ali Balli
EDIRNE/KIRKLARELI/CANAKKALE/MUGLA/HATAY, Turkey (AA) – At least 140 irregular migrants were held across Turkey, security sources said Monday.
In Edirne, a northwestern province, Turkish police rounded up 24 irregular migrants — Pakistani and Bangladeshi nationals — in Ipsala district near the Bulgarian border, said the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to media.
Also, 33 irregular migrants, all Afghan and Pakistani nationals, were held by gendarmerie forces in northwestern Kirklareli province.
In Canakkale, another northwestern province, the coast guard held 29 irregular Afghan migrants in Ayvacik district.
The migrants were planning to cross to the Greek islands and Europe.
Separately, the coast guard held 21 irregular migrants — Syria, Palestine and Somalia nationals — in Bodrum district of western Mugla province.
Meanwhile, 33 irregular migrants were nabbed during regular border patrols in Hatay, a southern province bordering Syria.
Turkey has been a main route for irregular migrants trying to cross into Europe, especially since 2011 when the Syrian civil war began.