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06 Mar 2020 | 07:26 PM UTC

Greece: Border guards fire tear gas along Turkish border March 6 /update 2

Minor clashes break out between Greek police officers and migrants along the Turkish border on March 6; tensions remain high

security
transportation
GRC

Event

Thousands of migrants remain gathered along the Greek-Turkish border as of Friday, March 6, after Turkey announced that it will no longer prevent refugees from entering Europe. On Friday, minor clashes broke out between Greek police officers and migrants, who reportedly attempted to break through a border fence and threw rocks at the officers in isolated incidents. Tear gas and water cannons were used to disperse some of the crowds, which returned to peacefully demanding to be allowed to cross the border. Some Greek officials also accused Turkish police officers of firing tear gas into Greece. Turkey said that it has deployed 1000 members of its special police force to the border to prevent migrants who have made it into Greece from being pushed back into Turkey.

Similar clashes between border security guards and migrants are possible over the coming days and weeks.

Context

Greek police officers also used tear gas to prevent migrants from crossing the border near Kastanies (Eastern Macedonia and Thrace region) on March 4. Turkey announced on February 28 that it would not long prevent migrants from entering Europe. On Tuesday, March 3, the EU stated that it will provide financial assets to Greece in order to manage the crisis while it also asked Turkey to fulfill its 2016 commitment to keep migrants on its soil. Athens has also reinforced its borders with military patrols amid the confrontation.

Advice

Individuals near the Greek-Turkish border are advised to monitor the situation, avoid the affected areas, and adhere to all instructions issued by local authorities.