Two young men shot dead during attempt to cross into Turkey: SOHR

Turkish border guards have shot dead two young men trying to cross into the country from northeast Syria, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported.

The incident took place in the Al-Hasakah countryside, near Turkey’s Ceylanpınar border checkpoint, the report said.

SOHR said the number of civilians killed by Turkish border forces since early 2023 has increased to 28, in addition to 44 who were injured by Turkish gunfire.

Turkey hosts more than 3 million Syrians who were granted temporary protection status after fleeing their war-torn country. Along with Afghans and other migrants, the presence of these Syrians has recently been the target of verbal attacks by a significant portion of the opposition, who vowed mass expulsions as part of their electoral campaigns.

These opposition circles associate the worsening of the economy with the migrant crisis.

The anti-migrant sentiment coincided with an increase in hateful rhetoric targeting migrants in real life and social media as well as in hate crimes that led to the death of dozens of migrants.

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) over the last few years announced more stringent measures to regulate migration, including restricting the access of migrants to major cities such as İstanbul and fortifying border areas.

While Turkey is party to the 1951 Geneva Convention on refugees, it retains a geographic limitation that rules out granting refugee status to people arriving from outside Europe.

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