By Hakan Mehmet Sahin
EDIRNE, Turkey (AA) - A total of 787 irregular migrants were held across Turkey on Tuesday, security sources said.
In northwestern province of Edirne, which borders Greece and Bulgaria, gendarmerie forces rounded up 550 migrants, said a source on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on speaking to the media.
Separately, the gendarmerie forces held 14 irregular migrants, all of them Iraqi nationals, in northwestern province of Kirklareli, another source said.
Moreover, the Turkish Coast Guard intercepted 21 irregular migrants in a rubber boat off the coast of northwestern Balikesir province.
Some 100 irregular migrants were also held in northwestern Canakkale province while they were preparing to sail for Greece.
Six people were also arrested for alleged human smuggling.
In addition, the Turkish Coast Guard held 41 irregular migrants in a rubber boat off the coast of Aegean Mugla province.
Some 31 irregular migrants were also held by the Turkish Coast Guard off the coast of Aegean Aydin province.
The gendarmerie forces in Aegean province of Izmir also held 30 irregular migrants.
All the migrants were later referred to provincial migration directorates.
Turkey has been the main route for refugees trying to cross to Europe, especially since 2011, the beginning of the Syrian civil war.
Some 268,000 irregular migrants were held in Turkey in 2018, according to the Interior Ministry.
*Writing by Busra Nur Bilgic