Over 200 irregular migrants held in Turkey

By Ozgun Tiran and Ali Balli

KIRKLARELI/MUGLA/VAN, Turkey (AA) – At least 202 irregular migrants were held across Turkey, security sources said on Saturday.

Turkish gendarmerie teams conducted an operation to capture 83 irregular migrants — in four groups — who were trying to cross into Bulgaria close to Derekoy Crossing Border.

Among the held were Afghan and Iranian nationals.

Separately, in Turkey’s Aegean province of Mugla, The Turkish Coast Guard held 37 people including women and children who were trying to cross to Greek Islands via a rubber boat.

Among the migrants were Syrian, Palestinian and Iraqi nationals.

Meanwhile, gendarmerie teams also rounded up 82 irregular migrants in Muradiye district of eastern Van province.

Among the migrants were Afghan, Pakistani and Bangladeshi nationals.

The drivers of two buses carrying irregular migrants were arrested.

All of the migrants were referred to the provincial migration offices.

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

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