Turkey: Greece Covers Up Forcible Returns of Migrants

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The Turkish Foreign Ministry confirmed that Greece aims to cover up the systematic forcible returns of migrants that led to the deaths of people by trying to direct opinion through photographs of naked migrants whose where and when they were taken.

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This came in a statement issued by the ministry on Monday in response to statements by the Greek Minister of Immigration and Asylum Notis Mitarakis.

“Mitarakis, who often stands out through inhumane practices against migrants, has this time engaged in the process of making an opinion by broadcasting pictures of migrants who were left naked, when and where they were taken,” the ministry said.

The statement indicated that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan presented at the United Nations General Assembly the inhumane treatment of Greece, and the documents and visuals that drew the attention of world public opinion to them put Greece in a state of despair on the international scene.

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The statement pointed out that Greece, which confiscates all the migrants’ things, including money, phones, identity cards and passports, takes their clothes and shoes, throws them into the sea, beats them naked, gives them electric shocks, targets them with rubber bullets, forces them to board rubber boats or a Bali life raft, aims through this attempt to cover up the return operations. Systematic illegality that leads to the death of people.

He pointed out that the video clips and international reports reveal the inhumane practices of Greece for years, from puncturing the rubber boats of migrants, dismantling their engines, beating migrants and even shooting them.

He added, “A month ago, a boat of migrants, including children and infants, trying to reach Italy from Lebanon was punctured, their valuables confiscated and they were left to face death. As a result of this inhumane behavior, the 9-month-old baby Assem and his older brother Abdel Wahab, 4 years old, died.”

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And he added, “Greece, which cannot justify its inhumane treatment on the international scene, is trying to accuse Turkey of slandering it.”