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Home >> Life
UPDATED: 08:51, January 10, 2006
Turkey captures over 500,000 illegal immigrants in past 10 years
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Turkish Police Director General Gokhan Aydiner announced on Monday that more than 500,000 illegal immigrants have been captured in the country over the past 10 years.

In an interview with local private NTV, Aydiner said, "The transportation of 575,516 illegal immigrants via Turkey has been hindered and 6,113 human traffickers from 39 different countries have been captured since 1995."

Aydiner also said that the operations against illegal immigrants have been continuing, adding that during the last two years alone, 491 victims were saved from human traffickers and sent back to their native countries.

According to Aydiner, women and children formed the bulk of human trafficking victims.

Turkey is located on a main route of illegal immigrants.

Each year, thousands of illegal immigrants from Asia, the Middle East, Africa and eastern Europe attempt to sneak into wealthy western European countries via Turkey.

Besides the position of being a "transit country", Turkey has gradually become a "target country" with more and more illegal immigrants entering Turkey via sea, air and land from Asian and African countries.

Facing increasing human trafficking, especially the women trafficking, Turkey introduced an action plan and launched a national task force in 2003 to cope with the issue.

Source: Xinhua

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