Turkey’s state-run news agency “Anadolu Agency” has been providing contradicting numbers on the irregular migrants held by Turkish authority across the country. By the beginning of this year, the agency announced the number of the migrants held in the seas around Turkey to be 26,678 for 2018, indicating a rise of 21.6 percent compared to 2017. Regarding 2019, the numbers released so far sum up to more than 2,500.Continue reading Disputed Numbers on irregular migrants held across Turkey
Al Monitor on Turkey’s plans of creating a safe zone along its border with Syria, which according to the Turkish President would allow millions of Syrians to ‘return home’. Frustrated by the slow process, Erdogan signaled that Turkey would proceed with their plans even without the involvement of the US and Russia.
Via Al Monitor – “Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan reiterated his pledge to launch a military offensive in northern Syria, saying on Monday that his military aims to create a safe zone in the area so that the 4 million or so Syrian refugees sheltering in Turkey can return home.”
Molly O’Toole covers the complexity of the life between displacement and return for Syrian refugees in Turkey. Putting together the stories of several Syrian interviewees, the article manifests the challanges regarding the flight to Turkey, the living conditions with severe barriers to registration, education, work and health, as well as the expectancies on resettlement despite the rising return discourse on refugees:
“The refugees face a no-win situation: If they return to Assad’s Syria, they risk conscription, disappearance and sectarian retribution, as well as an utter lack of basic services and opportunity. If they stay in Turkey, they face chronic uncertainty and destitution, as domestic and international politics turn against them.”
Via Newsweek – It was June 2011, and Barzan Ramo scrambled inside from the balcony. The 22-year-old college student was studying for his final exams in Deir Ezzor in eastern Syria when rebel groups and regime forces backing President Bashar al-Assad clashed beneath him.
Selcan Hacaoglu takes on the rising anti-migrant sentiments against Syrians at the border towns of Turkey for Bloomberg Businessweek . The text involves some stigmatizing language, on which a critical reflection remains missing. Still we are posting here, since it also gives a glimpse of Syrians’ incorporation into different sectors of labour market.
By Selcan Hacaoglu
As warplanes bombed his Syrian hometown of Aleppo, factory-owner Amer Hadri stepped on the gas pedal of his silver BMW 5 series and made for the safety of Turkey. Continue reading Bloomberg reports on the intolerance to migrants in the Southeastern Towns of Turkey
Even though Lebanon recently announced a slowdown in the number of Syrians returning from Lebanon, as several returning Syrians had recently been killed, the Turkish state run Anadolu agency reports about thousands of Syrians crossing the border back to Syria.
Thousands of Syrian refugees return home from Turkey
Via Ahval – Thousands of Syrians have left Turkey over the past fortnight to return to their hometowns liberated from militants in northwestern Syria, Hürriyet Daily News reported.
Some 4,000 Syrians who had taken refuge in different parts of Turkey flocked to the Cilvegözü border gate in Hatay province to cross back into their homeland, according to the initial report from state-run Anadolu Agency.
Continue reading Thousands of Syrian refugees return back to Syria from Turkey
Via Turkish Minute – Turkey has closed down six camps for Syrian refugees due to austerity measures the government has taken amidst economic problems, the Cumhuriyet daily reported on Thursday.
The move affected some 132,990 Syrian refugees.
According to the Interior Ministry, 76 percent of the refugees rented apartments with the help of allowances provided by the government. The remainder has been transferred to other camps.
The presence of 3.5 million Syrian refugees in Turkey has become an increasing source of tension among Turkish people and the Turkish government also appears to be losing sympathy for those displaced by the conflict.
The Interior Ministry this month closed the Süleyman Shah Accommodation Facility, which was established by the prime ministry in 2012 in the town of Akçakale on the Syrian border. But some of its 22,000 residents complained they had not received promised payments and alternative housing, and said they had simply been kicked out. Continue reading Turkey empties Syrian border refugee camp
Flooding in Lebanon and Turkey has left refugees dead after heavy rains hit the region and swamped refugee camps.
Videos shared by member of the Syrian Negotiations Committee Hadi Albahra, reportedly from refugee camps near the Lebanese border town of Arsal, show the ground completely flooded, with tents and belongings destroyed.
We feel the urge to publish this internal view of Syria:direct from the out-of-sight Turkish-Syrian border, that is further moved into the northern Syrian territory. Since the Turkish state is increasingly investing in both internal and external policies for the return of Syrian refugees, in addition to the EUropean border regime that is extra fortified via the externalization of controls even-beyond the neighboring Turkey, it is vital to keep an eye on the ongoing situation at the Northern Syria. Apparently, Northern Syria became a regional refugee accommodation center for the displaced Syrians, with Turkey’s effort to exert control over the area through various mechanisms. Therefore the region’s condition is a central determinant both for the responses of Syrian refugees in Turkey (be it from the region or not) to the incentives of return, and for the Syrians in Syria in considering their survival chances within the region or the options of further movement.
AMMAN: When the governor of Turkey’s Kilis province arrived at the opening ceremony of a new courthouse in the northern Aleppo town of a-Rai last month, he was met by Turkish music blasting out of speakers and salutes from local Syrian police officers. Continue reading ‘The head is Turkish, the body Syrian’: Expanding Turkish influence in northern Syria
Tareq* can recall in detail each of the 22 times he climbed over the concrete border wall, dodged a flurry of bullets, and sprinted as fast as he could – until Turkish border guards caught him and turned him back.
On his 23rd attempt, the soldiers drove the 26-year-old Syrian to a police station called Branch 500 in Hatay. There they presented him with a choice: either stay in prison – for how long, they wouldn’t say – or sign a paper and walk free.
“It’s not like they’re physically putting a gun to your head, but you have no other option,” Tareq says. He signed and the next day he was driven across the border and dropped back where he had started, in Idlib.