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Greek Migration Min. Responds to Reports of "Organized Forced Return of Migrants"

Ευρωκίνηση

Migration and Asylum Minister Notis Mitarachi. (Photo by Eurokinissi/ Yiannis Panagopoulos)

ATHENS -- The Greek Ministry of Migration & Asylum refuted reports that it was "organizing the forced return of migrants" on Friday and called related media reports "a systematic effort to distort facts in order to serve specific goals."

The policy of the ministry is to work in observance of international laws, "as a contemporary European country that welcomes refugees who are in true need, assists them and supports them to integrate in society and function independently. However, illegal migration remains one of the most serious and sensitive issues that we face as a Greek country and Greek society the last five years, and as a country that serves as an entry gate to the European Union."

In this context, it noted, "we obviously proceed to departures, with an emphasis on returns - voluntary or not - of people who are not entitled to international protection" and it called for "greater attention in evaluating such facts as true and reliable."