United Nations refugee agency (UNHCR) said it was “deeply distressed” by reports of nearly 100 nude migrants at the border between Greece and Turkey.
“UNHCR is deeply saddened by the shocking reports and images of 92 people believed to have been found on the Greek-Turkish land border, stripped of their clothes.” the agency tweeted on Sunday.
“We condemn such cruel and despicable treatment and call for a full investigation into this incident,” it added.
Turkey and Greece have blamed each other for the situation. Greece’s Minister of Immigration and Refugees, Notis Mitarachi, on Saturday tweeted a photo he alluded to were some of the 92 migrants at the border, accusing Turkey of deserving behaviour. shy.
It is not clear why the men in the photo are not dressed.
“Turkey’s behavior towards the 92 migrants we rescued at the border today, is a shame to civilization,” Mitarachi tweeted alongside the photo.
The Immigration Minister added that he expected Ankara to investigate the incident and protect its border with the European Union (EU).
CNN was unable to independently verify the photo.
Greek police on Saturday said their forces had “discovered 92 illegal migrants without clothes and some of them with wounds on their bodies,” near the northern border. of the country.
“Following an investigation by the Greek police and officials from the EU border agency Frontex, it was found that they [the migrants] was pushed into Greek territory, across the Evros River, by dinghy from Turkey to Greece,” the police added in a statement on Twitter.
The statement added that Greek authorities immediately provided clothing, food and first aid to the migrants.
Greece’s Ministry of Citizen Protection said in a statement on Saturday that, according to the migrants’ accounts, they were transported to the Evros River by means of Turkish authorities, after which they boarded a dinghy to cross to Greece.
“Turkey continues to publicize its tools to support immigrants, violate human rights, [and] violates international law,” the statement continued.
Turkey has denied involvement in the incident.
“Because you can’t find a single human rights violation by [Turkey]you’re just trying to expose [the] images of your cruelty that you have committed as if [Turkey’s] accomplished [it]”, Deputy Interior Minister Ismail Catakli tweeted Saturday in response to Mitarachi.
Catakli also accused Greece of “manipulation and dishonesty” in its tweet.
Last year, Greece completed construction of a 40-kilometer (25-mile) wall along its border with Turkey amid concerns that a Taliban takeover of Afghanistan could trigger an influx of asylum seekers.
The country was at the center of Europe’s migration crisis in the mid-2010s, when millions of refugees and migrants from Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq arrived on the continent. Since then, it has taken a tough approach, rejecting calls from Turkey and international organizations to allow more migrants to cross its borders.