11 Syrian migrants die as minibus crashes in Western Turkey

11 Syrian migrants die as their overcrowded minibus crashes into wall in the northwestern Turkish province of Balikesir

Photo by: AA
Photo by: AA

The minibus was carrying almost 40 Syrians although its capacity is 25

At least 11 Syrian migrants have been killed and nearly 28 others were injured when an overcrowded minibus they were traveling in crashed into a wall, in the northwestern Turkish province of Balikesir on Saturday.

The District Governor Yasin Ozturk said that 11 people died and many others were injured in the accident near the Sapci region.

Ozturk said that the minibus was carrying almost 40 Syrians although its capacity is 25, and that the refugees inside of it were en route to Ayvalik, a town in western Turkey.

"Eight people died at the scene. Many injured people were taken to nearby hospitals. But two of those injured could not be saved," Ozturk said.

"We are afraid of the death toll rising," he added.

Illegal immigration has become a major problem in Turkey especially in the Aegean region of the country.

According to the officials, most of the undocumented immigrants come from Syria and the Middle Eastern countries. Migrants try to flee to Europe from Turkey via the Aegean Sea, despite the ever-present risk of death in overcrowded boats.

Syrian refugees escaping the violence in their country, began to flee Syria in large numbers with the escalation of the Syrian Civil War in 2012. One of their most preferred destination is neighbouring Turkey, which hosts over 1.7 million Syrian refugees in addition to 300,000 Iraqi refugees.

TRTWorld, AA