Six more Turkish fugitives enter Greece, plan to seek asylum
This file photo taken on Jan. 23 shows Turkish officers being escorted by Greek special police forces as they leave the Greek Supreme Court in Athens, after a hearing concerning a possible extradition of the officers over failed coup in Turkey. AFP photoGreek police said on Feb. 8 that two more Turkish families have illegally entered the country across a border river and plan to request asylum, claiming they face persecution in Turkey.
The fugitives were taken into custody by border guard troops in the northeastern town of Orestiada after allegedly crossing the Maritsa River in plastic boats, according to a statement by the ELAS police organization.
Police said a 38-year-old Tunisian and a 21-year-old Moroccan were also taken into custody for allegedly helping the Turkish fugitives.
The Turks were identified as two men, three women and a one-year-old boy, the Associated Press has reported.
The suspects have been referred to the Orestiada prosecutor’s office, the statement said.
Greek media reported that the six individuals are likely to be members of the Gülen movement, led by U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gülen, who is accused of orchestrating the July 2016 failed coup attempt, and would seek asylum in Greece.
The number of Turkish citizens who have illegally entered Greece since the attempted takeover now stands at 100, including eight former Turkish soldiers whose extradition were rejected by Athens.
All claim they are in danger in their country, with authorities linking them with the attempted takeover.