Over 140 irregular migrants held across Turkey

By S.Ahmet Aytac

IZMIR / MUGLA / KAHRAMANMARAS, Turkey (AA) – At least 147 irregular migrants were held across Turkey, security sources said Tuesday.

In the Aegean province of Izmir, 75 irregular migrants — including women and children — were held off the coastal Urla district, said a security source, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media.

The migrants — 74 Pakistanis and one Afghan — were trying to reach Greek islands on a rubber boat, the source added.

Also, security forces held 20 irregular migrants in Fethiye in the Aegean Mugla province trying to cross to Europe.

Separately, 52 irregular migrants — all Afghan nationals — were held by gendarmerie forces in Goksun in the southern Kahramanmaras province.

Security forces also arrested six human trafficking suspects in three provinces.

Turkey has been a main route for irregular migrants trying to cross into Europe, especially since 2011, when the Syrian civil war began.