Greek Media Publishes Photos of Turkish Authorities Allegedly Helping Migrants

A migrant smiles and thumbs up as he walks with others on a road near Idomeni near the bor

Greek media have published photographs claiming to show Turkish security services at the border helping migrants cross into Greece by watching out for border patrols.

The photographs, which are said to have been taken along the Evros river on the Greek border with Turkey, show migrants crossing the river in an attempt to get to Greece, while a Turkish armoured vehicle watches from a distance.

According to a report from Greek newspaper Proto Thema, the Turkish border authorities were not in the area to stop the migrants from crossing into the European Union, but were on the lookout for border patrols and agents of the EU’s border agency Frontex.

The paper states that an estimated 500 migrants attempt to cross into Greece every day, with dozens trying to make the crossing along the border in the Evros region. Around 80 per cent of the migrants arriving from Turkey are said to be from Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Bangladesh.

Turkey has previously been accused of helping illegals get across the border in March, with a Turkish soldier admitting to helping the migrants.

“We have checked that everything has gone well and that the smugglers do not charge too much. We also have intelligence about where and when it is safe to get over,” the soldier had said.

Earlier this week, Greek Deputy Minister of Migration and Asylum Giorgos Koumoutsakos warned that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan might threaten to open the gates to a large number of migrants in the coming weeks as tensions between Greece and Turkey remain high.

“If Erdogan flirts with the thought of exerting pressure through migration, he may not stop at Evros but move on to the islands,” Koumoutsakos said.

The EU is set to meet later this month and discuss possible sanctions against Turkey over its behaviour in the Mediterranean, where Erdogan has controversially approved seismic research in areas of the Mediterranean Sea which Greece asserts is a part of its exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

In late July, Greece put its armed forces on alert over the matter, and tensions have remained high ever since. On Monday, Grece announced it would be boosting its military presence even further.

“The Turkish leadership is unleashing, on a near-daily basis, threats of war and makes provocative statements against Greece,” Greek government spokesman Stelios Petsas said.

Mr Petsas added: “We respond with political, diplomatic and operational readiness, determined to do whatever is necessary to protect our sovereign rights.”

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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