İZMİR – Anadolu Agency
At least 116 undocumented migrants have been held during anti-human trafficking operations across Turkey, according to coast guard officials on April 10.
In the Aegean province of Aydın, coast guard units rounded up 79 Syrians off the coast of the Kuşadası resort town after the captain of a cargo ship reported undocumented migrants requesting to come aboard.
In the northwestern Balıkesir province, coast guards held 37 undocumented migrants including Syrians and an Iraqi in the Ayvalık district who were seeking an illegal route to reach the Greek Lesbos island off Maden island of Ayvalık.
The migrants were referred to the district police.
Turkey has been a main route for refugees trying to cross into Europe, especially since the beginning of a civil war in Syria.
Among migrants held in 2017 in Turkey, the majority came from Pakistan — around 15,000 — followed by Afghans at around 12,000. Syrians totaled about 10,000.