Turkish Coast Guards can be seen rescuing migrants. Photo via: MEMO
A number of Palestinian refugee families have appealed to the international human rights and humanitarian institutions to update them on their relatives’ condition after reports have emerged on the interception of a migrant boat bound for Greece.
34 irregular migrants have reportedly been rescued by the Turkish coast guard off the coast of Izmir, trying to disembark in Greek.
The migrants were boarding an inflatable boat.
Turkey has served as a major launch-off point for migrants fleeing Syria, among other war-stricken zones, onboard “death boats” bound for Europe, as they rummaged around for a safe shelter. Dozens of Palestinians died at sea, trying to get to safety to European destinations.
The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) put the number of migrants entering Greece in 2019 at 74,613.
In 2019, Turkish authorities held nearly 455,000 irregular migrants across the country, including about 60,000 trying to cross the Mediterranean.
As many as 268,000 irregular migrants were held in Turkey in 2018, 175,000 each in 2017 and 2016 and 146,000 in 2015.
Palestinian refugees continue to risk their lives onboard the “death boats” to Greece, rummaging around for a momentary respite from the daily scenes of bloodshed and destruction. Dozens of refugees have died onboard Greece-bound ships. Several others have been arrested by Turkish coast guards.