Turkey: Defense minister denies mass entry of irregular migrants


Defense Minister Hulusi Akar has denied allegations that irregular migrants are entering through the Turkish borders in massive numbers, stressing that political comments by the opposition that suggest an increase in the refugees are based on some footage taken in different countries and at different times.

“The Turkish Armed Forces, in line with the command chain, by using the most advanced technology, are continuing to work 7/24 for the protection of our border with full determination and sacrifice. Our troops never allow any illegal entry into our borders,” Akar said at a meeting in the bordering town of Hatay on late April 2.

Akar’s statement followed a video message by Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and joint opposition presidential candidate, who argued that there was an increase in the number of irregular migrants. Kılıçdaroğlu called on the troops to do their jobs and stop the entrance of migrants.

Akar, however, denied the accusations and stressed that videos showing some irregular migrants’ mobilization have been taken in other countries and at different times, and therefore, have nothing to do with Türkiye. “These are absolutely not accurate,” he stated.

Noting that he made inspections on the bordering towns following the deadly earthquakes in early February, Akar explained that he observed no negligence in keeping the Turkish borders secure. Some 60,000 Syrian have voluntarily returned to their country after the disaster, and no other mobility happened through the borders, Akar added.

Akar also urged that security matters should not be politicized. “Everyone should act with responsibility and respect to the efforts of our troops who are protecting our borders day and night,” he stressed.__Daily Hurriyet