Greece Denounces ‘Fake News’ as Turkey Claims Five Migrants Shot at Border

(AP Photo/Giannis Papanikos)

Greece has accused the Turkish government of spreading “fake news” propaganda amid claims as many as five migrants have been shot dead on the border.

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan claimed that the Greek police had killed “at least five people” and that the Greek border forces had intentionally tried to pierce rubber dinghies used by migrants in an effort to sink them.

“Greece persecutes those people,” Erdogan alleged in the Turkish newspaper Daily Sabah on Friday, saying: “Those [Greek] politicians should know that human life is not cheap.”

“Are the borders open or closed? We don’t have time to discuss it anymore. It is done. Refugees are leaving on their own,” he added.

President Erdogan also noted that he had refused an invitation from Bulgarian prime minister Boyko Borisov to hold a trilateral summit that would include Greek prime minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, saying that he rejected it because of the Greek police’s alleged treatment of migrants.

“Our borders will not close. Bulgarian prime minister Borissov has asked to meet in Sofia and invite Kyriakos Mitsotakis. On the day he proposed it, there were two deaths at the border. I don’t want to be in the same place and in the same photo as him,” Erdogan claimed.

Greek Minister of State Giorgos Gerapetritis, meanwhile, sayid there has been no “excessive violence” against migrants at the border and that Greek forces had used “proportionate measures”

Greek government spokesman Stelios Petsas also hit back at Turkey, claiming the country was not only actively spreading fake news about the border situation but was facilitating human trafficking as well.

Others have also claimed that the Turkish government has not only been bussing in migrants to the border area but has been arming them with tear gas and actively helping them get across the border into Greece.

A Turkish soldier reportedly told Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter he had been given specific orders to help migrants get across the border.

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