The European Commission expects the Greek authorities to follow up on the allegations of the Turkish ministry of foreign affairs over migrants’ mistreatment and the illegal practice of “pushback”, a Commission spokesperson has said.
“The Commission is always concerned about reports of mistreatment of migrants and refugees and takes such allegations very seriously. Any form of violence against or abuse of migrants and refugees is unacceptable,” the EU official told Greek ONE TV channel, according to euractiv.com.
The official added that the EU executive is in contact with the Greek authorities concerning allegations of mistreatment and of non-EU nationals being denied the possibility to apply for asylum as well as the wider implementation of EU legislation on migration and asylum.
“It is, however, first and foremost the responsibility of the Greek authorities to ensure that these rights are respected and that access to asylum procedures is provided to everyone expressing their wish to lodge an application, in accordance with EU law,” the EU spokesperson reportedly said, adding that the Greek authorities have denied the allegations.
Last weekend the Turkish Foreign Ministry claimed in a statement that Greece is conducting “illegal pushbacks” and brings refugee boats to sink.
Ankara claimed further that 25,404 migrants were pushed back into Turkey in the first ten months of 2019 and 11,867 in 2018.
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