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Frontex: 'Unprecedented' situation with illegal immigration on Greece's NE land border

Δημοσίευση 10 Ιανουαρίου 2011, 11:25 / Ανανεώθηκε 27 Ιουνίου 2013, 14:55
Frontex: 'Unprecedented' situation with illegal immigration  on Greece's NE land border
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A report by the increasingly influential Frontex -- the European agency responsible for the management of operational cooperation of EU member-states' external borders -- refers to an "unprecedented" situation in terms of illegal migration in Greece's land borders with Turkey.

A report by the increasingly influential Frontex -- the European agency responsible for the management of operational cooperation of EU member-states' external borders -- refers to an "unprecedented" situation in terms of illegal migration in Greece's land borders with Turkey.

According to a front-page article appearing in the Sunday edition of "Kathimerini", which quotes the Frontex report, roughly 31,000 illegal immigrants, with Afghans and Algerians making up the majority, were detected between January and September 2010 attempting to enter Greece from Turkey.

The number of illegal migrants, practically all from Third World countries in North Africa, the Middle East and South Asia, could be much larger, the Frontex report is quoted as stating.

The report cites one of the greatest influxes of illegal immigrants in the Union's history, in part basing this assessment on the sea patrols Frontex began in the eastern Aegean, which supposedly forced migrant smugglers to use the land route.

Just as importantly, Turkey's role as a transit country for illegal migrants is underlined, while noting that the massive scope of the problem makes it impossible for Greek authorities to deal with it alone.

On the news front, another body was discovered on Sunday in a field some four kilometres southeast of a guard tower on the Evros River, in the Peplos district of Evros prefecture.

According to initial reports, the body is of an African male aged 20 to 25. The cause of death was listed as exposure.

Meanwhile, on Saturday a mixed Greek and Frontex patrol intercepted a group of four illegal immigrants that had just rowed across the Evros River from Turkish territory aboard an inflatable dinghy.

One of two alleged migrant smugglers was also arrested. The other fled back into Turkish territory.

Finally, a Moroccan national, 30, was arrested in the Crete port city of Hania for attempting to transport 15 illegal immigrants, identified as Syrian nationals, to Italy aboard a decrepit ship anchored off a local harbour. The suspect was arrested and the illegals were detained, while another two men, a Moroccan and a Syrian, are sought by police.

Of the 15 illegals, nine were listed as minors, with the youngest only three years old.