Greece sends second group of irregular migrants to Turkey

Greek government sends second group of irregular Pakistani migrants to Turkey according to EU-Turkey admission deal

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Migrants and refugees argue with Greek policeman after they tried to open the border fence at a makeshift camp at the Greek-Macedonian border near the village of Idomeni, Greece, April 7, 2016.

A ferry carrying 45 Pakistani irregular migrants left the Greek island of Lesbos for Turkey on Friday, part of a European Union (EU) deal that began this week to halt mass irregular migrants to Europe across the Aegean Sea.

This would be the second boat that is to send back to Turkey. According to Greek state TV another boat is scheduled to leave the island later in the day.

The TV said that the first boat that was sent in early morning was carrying migrants from Pakistan.

Turkey welcomed on Monday the first group of 202 irregular migrants, mostly from Pakistan and Afghanistan.

According to the Turkey-EU readmission deal Ankara will welcome migrants from Greece into Turkey as the EU takes Syrian refugees from Turkey into EU countries in exchange.

The deal also pledges visa-free travel in the EU's Schengen Area for Turkish citizens, which is set to be sped up, along with the advance of Turkey’s EU membership negotiations. In addition the EU will also send aid to help cover the billions of euros Turkey has spent on refugees over the past six years.

Turkey has offered to sign readmission agreements with 14 "source" countries, a move which would enable it to take back refugees who have been rejected by the EU more quickly.


Turkey is a transit point for refugees and asylum seekers aiming to reach European countries because of its geography bridging the Middle East and Europe.

Syrian refugees escaping the violence in their country fled Syria in large numbers following the escalation of the Syrian Civil War in 2012.

One of their most preferred destinations was neighbouring Turkey, which hosts the most Syrian refugees in the world according to registration records of the United Nations.

Turkey has spent nearly $10 billion of its own resources on the refugees whose number in the country has been climbing to 2.7 million people.

During the civil war, nearly 8 million people have been displaced internally while at least 5 million have fled the country to the neighbouring countries of Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt and Jordan.

TRTWorld and agencies