Turks asked to help at border

Citizens’ Protection Minister Michalis Chrysochoidis has written to Turkey’s Interior Minister Besir Atalay, asking for Ankara’s help with Greece’s efforts to curb a seemingly relentless wave of migrants entering Greece illegally in a bid to get to Europe, it emerged yesterday. «Only systematic and close cooperation between Greece and Turkey can curb the flow of illegal immigration to the European Union,» Chrysochoidis reportedly wrote in the letter. According to sources, Chrysochoidis has invited Atalay to Athens to discuss a set of proposals. These include the closer cooperation of Greek and Turkish coast guard officials to ensure that a bilateral pact for the repatriation of migrants is enforced. Turkish vessels currently make no effort to stop smuggling ships, the Greek coast guard says. Chrysochoidis plans to discuss the enforcement of the bilateral repatriation pact as well as pacts between Turkey and the European Union and with countries of migrants’ origin, such as Pakistan and Afghanistan.

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