Six rights groups on Monday denounced what they said was the lack of an effective investigation of reports that Greece is illegally pushing migrants back over the border into Turkey.
Their statement came a day after Migration Minister Notis Mitarachi denounced previous such claims as “fake news”.
The Hellenic League for Human Rights and five other rights groups stressed that the alleged pushbacks -- which have been reported since March 2020 -- were not just illegal but were endangering the lives of migrants.
Deploring the lack of “an efficient investigation” by either the country’s justice system or any independent authority, they said they had sent a detailed report to the UN Special Rapporteur on February 1.
On Sunday, Mitarachi dismissed past claims of illegal pushbacks to a misinformation campaign orchestrated by Turkey, in comments to To Vima weekly.
“Investigations until now by (EU border agency) Frontex and the (Greek) coastguard have not confirmed any of the claims,” he said.
But the six rights groups said the reported incidents “concern practices that even put in danger human lives, in addition to the inhumane treatment of people entitled to international protection”.
After the illegal pushbacks, migrants “are then found helpless in rafts, near the Turkish coasts at the absolute risk of their own lives”, they said.
The signatories included the Greek League for Human Rights and the Hellenic Council for Refugees.
Malaysia should not deport refugees amid Myanmar coup, says UN refugee agencyThe UN refugee agency said on Friday Malaysia should not deport refugees after Reuters reported that it was planning to send 1,200 Myanmar nationals ... World News
Biden to issue executive order to build up US capacity to accept refugeesWhite House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said on Thursday that President Joe Biden will issue an executive order to build up the U.S. ... World News
Refugees in Jordan receive COVID-19 vaccinations as inoculation drive rolls-out: UNJordan has become one of the world’s first countries to start COVID-19 vaccinations for refugees, UNHCR, the UN refugee agency, has reported.Jordan ... Coronavirus