NGOs decry designation of Turkey as safe country

NGOs decry designation of Turkey as safe country

Nongovernmental organizations have slammed the decision by the ministries of Migration and Foreign Affairs designating Turkey as a safe third country for asylum seekers from Syria, Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan and Bangladesh, saying it will result in thousands living in Greece without papers and without protection.

In an online press conference on Wednesday, the NGOs said the decision impacts more than 67% of asylum seekers in Greece.

“People whose application is rejected will not have the right to stay in the country. They will be in danger of being detained in pre-departure centers,” said Alexandros Konstantinou of the Greek Council for Refugees.

“They will not have access to benefits, to the labor market, except for very limited access to the health system.”

Karl Kopp, of German organization Pro Asyl, warned of thousands of rejected people without papers and that this will be good news for the smuggling industry.

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