The statement by Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman Hakim Aksoy:
The last example of manipulation of public opinion that Greece is attempting to conduct through distortion of facts is the baseless and unfortunate statements of Prime Minister Mitsotakis.
Compared to the migratory crisis of 2015 when 850 thousand irregular migrants reached Europe, the current level of crossings have reduced by 94% thanks to measures taken by Turkey.
It is not humane for countries located on the migration routes as well as Greece to implement “zero migrant policy” and disregard the rights of these people. Greece and countries suffering from migration need to focus primarily on addressing the root causes triggering migration in source countries.
Turkey is hosting more than 4 million externally displaced people. Our Greek counterparts as well as international community should understand that it is not fair for Turkey to solely shoulder the burden of migration, which is a global problem.
Despite the fact that Greek Prime Minister refuses to see and acknowledge the situation, irregular migrants continue to be pushed-back at the border by the Greek authorities. Disregarding European values, these people are subjected to inhumane treatment.
We deem it appropriate to remind Greece that opting for cooperation with Turkey in this matter will bring more effective results instead of making propaganda against Turkey.
We urge the Greek Government to,
– Redress the inhumane conditions migrants are going through, which are also recorded by international organizations,
– Prevent death of migrant infants, minors as well as migrants who cannot receive required assistance,
– Not to forget that these people have rights and freedoms arising from international law,
– Put an end to the push-back practice of migrants which is against international law,
– Not to use weapons against migrants and not to treat them inhumanely,
– Show respect to beliefs of migrants as well as common values of Europe and humanity./ibna