Police detain 11 Syrians for ‘renting’ out children to beg in Turkey’s south
ADANA - Doğan News Agency
Police detained 11 people in a raid on Syrian citizens who were understood to have been renting out their children to beg on a daily basis in the streets of Adana, a province in Turkey’s south, on Oct. 21.
In a dawn raid, 100 law enforcement officials, who had been monitoring beggars and their families for the past month, apprehended 11 people for renting out their children for varying prices in Adana’s Seyhan district. Two people fled during the raid.
As the kids who fell short on their profits were rented out for around 20 Turkish Liras (roughly $5.5), the more profitable ones had 100 liras (about $27) worth of price tags on them for the daily begging.
The detained children and the families were first brought to the City Immigration Center, and then were transferred to a temporary shelter in Osmaniye, a smaller province neighboring Adana.
The Syrian children, who have fled their war-torn countries and have quickly picked up on their Turkish when they took shelter in the country, can be seen frequently in the streets of Adana, mostly begging by traffic lights in groups.
Adana, a city of 1.7 million, is an industrial city in Turkey’s south by the Mediterranean coast. It became one of the most popular refuge hubs in the country since the beginning of the Syrian war.
There are 166,332 Syrians in the neighboring southern province of Mersin, while the number is slightly lesser, at 165,028, in Adana.
The number of Syrian migrants in Turkey has surpassed 3.2 million, according to statistics released by the Interior Ministry’s Directorate General of Migration Management on Oct. 6.
According to official numbers, Turkey hosts some 4.5 million migrants, including Syrians. Iraqi migrants follow Syrians, with nearly 250,000 of them living across Turkey.