Turkey stops truck carrying 82 migrants bound for Europe

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By Reuters
Turkey stops truck carrying 82 migrants bound for Europe

Turkey on Monday seized 82 migrants in the back of a truck in the coastal town of Ayvacik.

A video released by the Turkish gendarmerie showed soldiers opening the doors to the back of the truck revealing people inside.

News agency IHA said the migrants were from Afghanistan and hoping to travel to Europe by sea. They sent to repatriation centres for deportation.

Mediterranean Sea arrivals into the European Union, including migrants making the longer and more perilous crossing from north Africa to Italy, totalled 172,301 in 2017, down from 362,753 in 2016 and over a million in 2015, according to U.N. data.

Numbers declined sharply since 2015 after Turkey, in exchange for 3 billion euros ($3.3 billion) in European Union aid and a promise to ease visa restrictions for Turks, began to exert more control on migrants trying to cross to the EU via its territory.

Yet many still attempt perilous trip and Turkey remains one of the main launch points.