16 February 2015
The Turkish Coast Guard rescued over 2,000 irregular migrants in the East Mediterranean between August 2014 and January 2015, officials have announced.
“Some 2,114 irregular migrants have been rescued from 16 vessels/boats intercepted in the East Mediterranean between August 2014 and January 2015,” the Turkish Coast Guard stated in a press release on Feb. 13.
Legal proceedings have been initiated against 25 people captured within the scope of Operation Safe-Med, the statement said.
Some 181 migrants and 11 crew members were captured on a commercial vessel on Jan. 9 upon tips from several sources, in addition to 152 migrants and four organizers on two fishing boats, it added.
“The Turkish Coast Guard Command aims to prevent irregular migration and possible human trafficking as it tries to keep the region under control,” the statement concluded.
Irregular migration describes a movement that takes place outside of the regulatory norms of the sending, transit and receiving countries, where people enter, stay or work in a country without the necessary authorization or documents required under immigration regulations, according to the International Organization for Migration.