UN 'Distressed' Over 92 Refugees Found Stripped at Turkey-Greece Border

The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has said it is "deeply distressed" by reports that 92 male migrants were found naked at the border between Turkey and Greece. The agency on Sunday called for a "full investigation" into the incident.

UN 'Distressed' Over 92 Refugees Found Stripped at Turkey-Greece Border
Image credit: The Independent

Facts

  • The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has said it is "deeply distressed" by reports that 92 male migrants were found naked at the border between Turkey and Greece. The agency on Sunday called for a "full investigation" into the incident.
  • The group of migrants, consisting mostly of Syrian and Afghan men who crossed into Greece using plastic boats, were found near the Evros river on Friday. Some showed signs of bodily injuries on discovery.
  • According to Greek officials, migrants claimed they had been taken there by Turkish military police, but the Turkish gov't. have claimed that Greece is responsible for the incident. EU border agency Frontex said of events that there had been a "potential violation of fundamental rights."
  • The conflicting accusations come amid growing tensions between the neighboring countries. Each has accused the other of aerospace violations, and Turkey has additionally accused Greece of illegally militarizing islands in the Aegean Sea.
  • Plans are underway in Greece to extend a 40km fence along the nation's border with Turkey to prevent the movement of migrants. The Greek government has also urged Ankara to respect a 2016 deal with the EU to contain the flow of migrants to Europe in exchange for billions of euros in aid.
  • The migrants were reportedly given food, clothes, and first aid in Greece and have been held by the Feres police since Saturday. They're expected to be transferred to the Fylakio reception and identification center near the northern town of Orestiada in the coming days.

Sources: CNN, New York Post, NBC, ABC, Al Jazeera, and Guardian.

Narratives

  • Narrative A, as provided by Greek City Times. These men were found stripped, having clearly crossed the Evros river in boats from Turkey - this alone should be enough evidence of Ankara's responsibility. The migrants themselves have even testified that Turkish army trucks relocated them to the river to send them into Greece. This was an illegal act committed by Turkey and the country must be condemned by the international community for violating the rights of vulnerable refugees.
  • Narrative B, as provided by Daily Sabah. Greek authorities are promoting fake news that blames Turkey in an attempt to divert public attention from Athens' infamous disregard for migrants' dignity. The truth is that these 92 refugees were robbed and left to die by Greek security forces, just as others were in 2019, and that such rights violations have all been carried out in complicity with Frontex.

Predictions