Turkish authorities deported over 28,000 irregular migrants from the country since the beginning of 2022, a 70% increase compared to the same period last year, the migration directorate said Monday.
In a statement, the Migration Management Directorate said Turkey deported 28,581 irregular migrants who illegally entered the country, violated visa and residency regulations, worked without permits, committed fraud and endangered public safety and security.
The deportation process for 18,801 irregular migrants from 94 nationalities, including 10,763 Afghan citizens, 2,740 Pakistani citizens, 1,776 Syrians and 3,522 from other nationalities, are kept under supervision at repatriation centers.
Meanwhile, Turkish authorities prevented the entry of some 2,616,509 foreigners who have attempted to illegally enter the country since 2016.
In 2022 alone, Turkish authorities prevented the illegal entry of 153,088 irregular migrants, in an effective border policy embraced by the migration authority, the statement said.
Turkish authorities also intercepted 74,516 irregular migrants in 2022 in various operations carried out in 81 provinces.
Some 1,054 irregular migrants were sent back to Afghanistan in nine charter flights organized between May 15-22, the migration directorate said, adding that 1,680 others are expected to be deported on 12 charter flights soon.
This year, a debate emerged as Turkey deals with an influx of migrants from more conflict zones, including Afghanistan, Ukraine and other countries, in addition to society's economic problems, which some sections place the burden on migrants' shoulders.
Turkey has been a key transit point for asylum seekers aiming to cross to Europe to start new lives, especially those fleeing war and persecution.
The country already hosts 4 million refugees, more than any other country in the world, and is taking new security measures on its borders to humanely prevent a fresh influx of migrants./DS