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Politics

Turkish Minister Says Greece’s Refugee Pushbacks Criminal

December 31, 2021

ANKARA – Without mentioning that Turkey is letting human traffickers keep sending them, Turkish Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu repeated claims that Greece is pushing back refugees and migrants across the border and the seas.

He told Turkey’s pro-government newspaper The Daily Sabah that’s a mouthpiece for President Recep Tayyip Erdogan that Greece and the EU’s border patrol Frontex bear shame for alleged pushbacks.

He called the EU agency the “disgrace of our century” that has to “wear black bands on their sleeves,” and added: “Pushbacks, especially by Greece, are both a serious problem and a crime against humanity, staring the whole world in the eye.”

During a year-end evaluation of Turkey’s Coast Guard he claimed that “Greek elements push back 83 percent of irregular migrants who reach their borders,” without offering any proof.

“It is not a clean institution. European civilization and Europe will be called to account for this institution. The world’s dirtiest institution is Frontex,” he added, not noting that Turkey’s Coast Guard doesn’t stop human traffickers.

Turkey is holding some 4.4 million refugees and migrants fleeing war, strife and economic hardship in their homelands who went there as a jumping-off point to reach the European Union.

After the bloc closed its borders to them and other EU countries reneged on promises to help settle them, the problem was largely dumped on Greece and its islands, still ongoing for now.

 

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