World Bulletin / News Desk
In Turkey’s northwestern province of Edirne, Turkish security forces held a total of 319 undocumented migrants mainly from Syria, Morocco, Algeria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Palestine, according to a gendarme source who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions over speaking to the media.
In the central province of Sivas, at least 20 undocumented Afghan migrants were held after they entered the country illegally, another gendarme source said.
The migrants, including 10 children, were caught after gendarmerie forces stopped a minibus on the Tokat-Erzincan highway near the Golova district during a security check.
The driver of the minibus, identified with the initials H.G., was arrested on charges of human trafficking, while the migrants were referred to the local immigration authorities.
Turkey has been the main route for refugees trying to cross into Europe, especially since the beginning of the civil war in Syria.
Among migrants held in the course of 2017 in Turkey, most came from Pakistan -- around 15,000 -- followed by Afghans at around 12,000. Syrians totaled about 10,000.
There has been a 60 percent increase in migrant flow since 2016. The number was 31,000 in 2016.