Migrants wait in hope at Turkey-Greece border

Migrants wait in hope at Turkey-Greece border

ANKARA - Anadolu Agency
Migrants wait in hope at Turkey-Greece border

Irregular migrants headed to Turkey's northwestern Edirne province are attempting to enter Europe after border gates were opened.

But the migrants face the intervention of Greek police while exposed to severe weather conditions.

The attempt by the migrants coming from different provinces, especially Istanbul, to cross into Europe through the Pazarkule border crossing opening to Greece is ongoing.

More than three thousand migrants who gathered in front of the gate were exposed to tear gas and sound bombs.

Greek police try to push the crowd from the gate by opening fire into the air.

Around 750 irregular migrants waiting in the buffer zone built by Greek police using razor wire, were hoping the gate would open on Feb. 29.

Spending the night around the fire they set with branches collected from wood, the migrants, including women and children, also try to bear harsh weather conditions, and hunger.

Despite aid by the Edirne governorship and some non-governmental groups, help remains insufficient as numbers keep growing.

Meanwhile, Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis called a meeting of the country’s national security council as migrants headed to the Greek borders after Turkey relaxed restrictions.

Around 75,000 migrants left Turkey, says interior minister

The number of migrants leaving Turkey via its northwestern border province of Edirne reached 47,113, the country's interior minister said on March 1.

Süleyman Soylu said on Twitter that figure was registered as of 11.00 a.m. local time.     

Turkish officials announced on Feb. 28 they would no longer try to stop irregular migrants from reaching Europe.     

The decision was made after 36 Turkish soldiers were killed by regime forces in Idlib, Syria.     

Turkish soldiers are working to protect local civilians under a 2018 deal with Russia under which acts of aggression are prohibited in the region.     

Thousands of irregular migrants have since flocked to Edirne in an attempt to make their way into Europe.     

Turkey already hosts some 3.7 million migrants from Syria alone, more than any other country in the world.     

It has repeatedly complained that Europe has failed to keep its promises to help migrants and stem further migrant waves.