Greece to Dismiss 750 Refugees to Turkey: Report

Greece to Dismiss 750 Refugees to Turkey: Report
Sat Apr 2, 2016 22:11:43

Greece is intending to send 750 refugees and asylum seekers back to Turkey as part of an agreement with the European Union (EU), Officials in Athens announced.

The ANA state news agency said in a report on Saturday that refugees would be transferred from the Greek island of Lesbos to the Turkish port of Dikili.

According to the report, the EU agency Frontex said two Turkish vessels have been prepared to transfer the refugees between Monday and Wednesday.

Frontex police forces are also expected to be available to escort the refugees during the process.

Meanwhile, an unnamed Greek government official has said some 400 Frontex police officers are expected to arrive in the country over the weekend.

On March 18, the European Union and Turkey reached a deal aimed at preventing refugees from reaching Europe by crossing the sea from Turkey to Greece’s Aegean islands.

Under the deal, all refugees landing on the Greek islands would be sent back to Turkey if they fail to apply for asylum or if their claim is rejected. In return, the EU would take in thousands of Syrian refugees directly from Turkey, which is home to some three million Syrian refugees, and grant Ankara more financial help, early visa-free travel, and faster progress in EU membership talks.

Separately, Turkey is also scheduled to send a first group of refugees to Germany on Monday.

Amnesty International has criticized the deal, saying it has "fatal flaws."

In recent months, Europe has been experiencing an unprecedented influx of refugees who are fleeing conflict-ridden countries in Africa and the Middle East, particularly Syria and Iraq.

Many blame major European powers for the exodus of refugees from their home countries, saying Western policies have led to a surge in terrorism and wars, forcing more people out of their homes.

Turkey, which has been serving as a gateway to Europe for many refugees, says it is home to some three million refugees.

More than 52,000 refugees seeking to reach northern European countries are currently stranded in Greece after Balkan states closed their borders. Press TV reported.


string(1138) "[{"id":"1803551","sort":"3522634","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/30/alalam_635949299931804198_25f_4x3.mp4","title":"VIDEO: Refugees Clash with Greek Riot Police in Idomeni Camp"} ,{"id":"1803015","sort":"3522635","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/28/alalam_635947770175002094_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Greek Police Clash with Anti-Refugee Protesters in Greece’s Thessaloniki"} ,{"id":"1801223","sort":"3522636","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/22/alalam_635942566185308019_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"URGENT: UN Slams Migrant ‘Detention Facilities’ in Greece"} ,{"id":"1798834","sort":"3522637","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/14/alalam_635935887806510071_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Hundreds of Migrants Cross Greece Border, Enter Macedonia"} ,{"id":"1800623","sort":"3522638","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/20/alalam_635940864311723546_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Huge Protests Held across Europe over EU-Turkey Migrants Agreement"} ,{"id":"1800234","sort":"3522639","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2016/03/19/alalam_635939724232730421_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Turkey’s Police Arrest over 1700 Migrants after Ankara-EU Agreement"} ]"