Turkey should be on alert against Afghan refugee influx: MHP leader
Turkey is currently hosting nearly half a million Afghans on its soil and should be on alert against a new influx from Afghanistan in the coming period, the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader has said.
“It is estimated that there are approximately 500,000 Afghan refugees in our country. It’s understood that an influx of refugees [from Afghanistan] will reach our borders in the risky and dangerous period ahead. We must be on the alert,” MHP chairman Devlet Bahçeli said in an interview with Türkgün newspaper over the weekend.
Bahçeli’s statement comes amid ongoing negotiations between Turkey and the United States over the control of the Kabul international airport. The withdrawal of NATO from Afghanistan has increased concerns that the Taliban will take over and establish a strict Islamic rule in the country. Many Afghans are trying to flee the country either through legal ways or illegally.
MHP leader also expressed views about an ongoing discussion about the stay of around 4 million Syrian refugees in Turkey.
“They are our guests. In principle, we are in favor of sending foreign nationals, who reside in our country in temporary status, back to their own countries in a safe and peaceful manner,” Bahçeli said.
He also criticized Syrians who visited their countries during the Eid al-Adha and returned to Turkey. “Those who can go to their countries for the Eid al-Adha should not return,” he said.
While on the one hand, Syrians are struggling for their country, but on the other, the ones who migrated to Turkey enjoying themselves at Turkey’s resorts, Bahçeli said, stressing that this was a huge inconsistency that draws reaction of people.
“Also, there should be a limit on asylum seekers from going and settling wherever they want without the control [of authorities],” he suggested.