350 Syrian refugees captured on boat off Turkey’s Antalya
DHA photoTurkish coast guards captured 352 Syrian refugees headed to Europe on a boat in the Mediterranean on June 29.
The authorities received notice that several migrants were heading to sea off the Manavgat district of Antalya province.
Coast guards then halted the boat named “Pelikan-1” in the Mediterranean as it sailed for European shores. Some 352 Syrians, including 132 children and 115 women, were captured and brought to Manavgat Sports Stadium for questioning. A pregnant woman among the refugees has been taken to hospital.
The refugees told security forces that they were heading to Italy.
Turkey does not deport Syrians due to the brutal civil war in the neighboring country, so the captured refugees were due to be sent to camps in the southern Turkish provinces of Hatay and Mersin.
Sharing borders with Syria and Iraq to the south and EU members Bulgaria and Greece to the northwest, Turkey has become a center for migrants looking to illegally enter the EU.
In recent years, one of the most favored routes to the EU has been Turkey’s Aegean region, as well as its southern provinces that open to the Mediterranean.