Irregular migrants heading to European border: Turkey
Turkey has decided to no longer stop Syrian refugees from reaching Europe by land and sea, a senior Turkish official told Reuters on Thursday, in anticipation of the imminent arrival of refugees from Syria's Idlib where nearly a million have been displaced.
Given the green light to seek their way to Europe, hundreds of irregular migrants on Friday came to Turkish coastal regions and border cities to do just that.
Turkish officials announced earlier that they would no longer try to stop irregular migrants from reaching Europe. Turkey already hosts some 3.6 million migrants from Syria alone-more than any other country in the world - and has complained that Europe failed to keep its promises to help the migrants as well as help Turkey stem further migrant waves.
Irregular migrants, including women and children, have been heading towards border villages of the country's western provinces of Edirne and Çanakkale to reach Greece.
The movement started at night and grew by the morning.
Irregular immigrants also moved to the regions with a coast on the Aegean Sea to cross the Greek islands.
The groups also flocked towards the Aegean, to Çeşme, Karaburun and Seferihisar in the Izmir province and Kuşadası and Dikili in the Aydın province.
The news also comes as attacks mount in Syria's Idlib province, with about a million refugees fleeing Assad regime attacks towards Turkey's southern borders.