Over 220 Migrants held across Turkey

By Esber Ayaydin

IZMIR, Turkey (AA) – At least 226 irregular migrants were held in eastern and western Turkey, security sources and officials said on Saturday.

Coast guard units caught 46 migrants off the coast of Turkey’s western Izmir province after they became stranded while trying to illegally travel to the Greek island of Lesbos.

In Turkey’s eastern Van province, provincial security forces caught 118 migrants including Pakistani and Afghan nationals who had illegally entered the country.

One suspect was arrested on human smuggling charges.

Separately, anti-smuggling and organized crime teams of Turkish police held 14 migrants preparing to cross the Greek border in the northwestern province of Edirne.

Security forces also arrested one suspect on human smuggling charges, sources said.

In the neighboring province of Kirklareli, provincial gendarmerie teams caught 48 migrants near the Bulgarian border.

The migrants — including Pakistani and Afghan nationals — were preparing to cross illegally into Europe.